What would you consider to be key strategic revisions/re-readings Aime Cesaire makes on Shakespeare’s The Tempest in A Tempest?

Expert Answers
teachersage eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The key strategic revision the play makes is in telling the story of The Tempest from the point of view of Ariel and Caliban, recast as a mulatto slave and a black slave. If Shakespeare's play represents a colonialist perspective, one that, for example, endorses Prospero's move to first learn everything he needs to know to survive from Caliban, then to turn on him and enslave him (rationalizing it by casting Caliban as a monster), in contrast, Cesaire offers the post-colonial or view-from-below version of colonialism that perceives the non-European Other with sympathy and the European as the unjust enslaver. 

In Cesaire's play, as outlined in the enote linked to below, the action has been moved to an island in the Carribean, where Ariel sincerely believes that obedience to Prospero will lead to freedom. Caliban, on the other hand, here not depicted as a monster, challenges Prospero at every turn in his desire to wrest freedom from colonial rule. 

Read the study guide:
The Tempest

Access hundreds of thousands of answers with a free trial.

Start Free Trial
Ask a Question