In Shakespeare's "The Tempest," how does the passage in Act I, Scene II, relate to the echoes of imperialism throughout the play?
Whether and how William Shakespeare’s “The Tempest” is an allegory about colonialism or imperialism has been widely debated among literary types. Because the very figure of “Shakespeare” remains such a mystery, it is nearly impossible to determine with a high level of certainty whether the author had colonialism in mind when he wrote “The Tempest” and, if so, to what extent such a theme permeates the work. What is known is that “The Tempest” was written during a time when European, especially Spanish, colonialism was in full swing and directed towards the New World across the Atlantic Ocean. The play takes place in the relatively confined space of the Mediterranean Sea and the northern coast of Africa, specifically, Tunis, and Naples, Italy. The reigning king of England, James, was known to look askance at imperial ambitions that risked incurring the wrath of other colonial powers. At the same time, as one scholar noted, there are references...
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