King Lear – power of nature/nature v. nurture/corruption of nature/fate

nakedness (3) unaccommodated man is no more but such a poor, bare, forked animal off, off, you lendings [tearing at his clothes][Kneels] Poor naked wretches…O, I have taken too little care of this
being at the mercy of heaven/god (1) as flies to wanton boys are we to the gods
superstition/fate/idea of a supernatural justice (3) this is the excellent foppery of the world, that when we are sick in fortune, often the surfeits of out own behaviour we make guilty of our disasters the sun, the moon and the stars (Ed – maybe reason he redeems himself slightly when he dies – realises his end is his own fault, as he doesn’t believe in superstitionthe stars above us govern our conditionsthese late eclipses in the sun and moon portend no good to us
bond between Goneril and Albany being broken (2) one self mate and make could not beget such different issuesyou are not worth the dust which the rude wind blows in your face…milk-livered man
Cordelia’s divine nature (3) fairest Cordelia, that art most rich being pooryou have seen sunshine and rain at once, her smiles and tears were like a better waythe holy water from her heavenly eyes
Lear’s rash anger with Cordelia, despite being his favourite daughter her offence must be of such unnatural degree that monsters itbe gone / Without our grace, our love, our benisonthis is so strange…commit a thing so monstrous, to dismantle so many folds of favoura wretch whom nature is ashamed almost t’acknowledge
sisters’/Edmund’s Machiavellien unnatural purposeunnatural dealingmost savage and unnatural
Edmund twists the concept of nature into “a force encouraging the individual to think only of the fulfillment of his own desires” (J. Dover Wilson) thou, Nature, art my goddess; to thy law my services are bound
Edmund’s resentfulness at his bastardy I should have been that I am had the maidenliest star in the firmament twinkled on my bastardizingwherefore should I stand in the plague of custom
idea of nature governing all the wisdom of Nature can reason it thushear, Nature, hear, dear goddess
natural bonds being broken, things going against nature yet nature finds itself scourged by the sequent effectslove cools, friendship falls off, brothers divide…the bond cracked ‘twixt son and father(Lear about Regan) is there any cause in nature that make these hard hearts?
nature being turned on its back ’tis the time’s plague when madmen lead the blindif you did wear a beard upon your chin, I’d shake it on this quarrel (servants standing up against masters)thou robed man of justice (Lear –> Poor Tom)philosopher (Lear –> Poor Tom)see reason in madnessI am a fool, thou art nothing (Fool to Lear)
animal imagery I am tied to the stake and I must stand the courseman’s life is cheap as beast’sthe lion and the belly-pinched wolf keep their fur dry, unbonneted he runspelican daughterscome not between the dragon and his wrath
lowering to the basest form/finding value in nothing/having no more than is needed our basest beggars are in the poorest thing superfluousallow not nature more than nature needsman’s life is cheap as beast’sdistribution should undo excess and each man have enough (Gloucester)[Kneels] Poor naked wretches…O, I have tame too little care of thisnothing could have subdued nature to such a lowness but his unkind daughters
loss of everything leading to humility here, take my purse (Gloucester)not being the worst stands in some rank of praisehe bids what will take allpoor fool and knave, I have one part in my heart that’s sorry yet for thee
people’s natural kindness (in juxtaposition to sisters’/Edmund’s “unnatural purpose”) Old ManEdgar/Poor Tom
needing nature to start again crack nature’s moulds, all germens spill at once (that make ingrateful man!)let them anatomize Regan; see what breeds about her heart
submission to the powers of nature let fall your horrible pleasure. Here I stand your slave, a poor, infirm, weak and despised old man
storm reflecting/encouraging turmoil spit fire, spout rain!I tax not you, you elements, with unkindness. I never gave you kingdom – REALLY REALLY GOOD ONE!!!the wrathful skies / gallow the very wanderers of the darkthous think’st that this contentious storm invades us to the skin…but where the greater malady is fixed, the lesser is scarce feltthis cold night will turn us all to fools and madmen (Fool)
true loyalty (Lear) wilt break my heart? (Kent) I had rather break mine own
exposure to the storm and the “basest beggars” of the kingdom reverses Lear’s nature [Kneels] Poor naked wretches…O, I have ta’en too little care of thisexpose thyself to feel what wretches feel, that thous mayst shake the super flux to them
healing powers of nature this rest might yet have balmed thy broken sinewsoppressed nature sleeps
Edgar’s comment immediately after Lear’s passing reflects the superstition of the star-gazers who believe in a fate controlled by the heavens Look up, my lord.
Albany at the very end summarises the natural order of things between good and evil people, as though righting the play as it ends all friends shall taste the wages of their virtue, and all foes the cup of their deservings
Gl and Lear (showing parallels again) show how the bond between parent and child has been corrupted (Gl) our flesh and blood is grown so vile that it doth hate what gets itis it the fashion that discarded fathers should have thus little mercy on their flesh?
Lear perhaps takes some responsibility for his daughters, admitting at least his responsibility for them as their father judicious punishment, ’twas this flesh begot / Those pelican daughters
Gl blindly (ironic, as in the moment of his blinding), calls upon Ed to help him, depending on the father-son bond between them for a show of compassion and loyalty (Gl) Edmund, enkindle all the sparks of nature to quit this horrid act
servants see Regan’s growing wickedness, and they imply that it will corrupt all women eventually, if she lives long enough to corrupt even more, given her power (corrupting abilities of power) (servant) is she live long and in the end meet the old course of death, women will all turn monsters
the sisters’ and Ed’s humanity and human nature has been completely twisted what most he should dislike seems pleasant to him, what like, offensivewisdom and goodness to the vile seem vile
Ed choosing fight above love and corrupting his nature to be tender-minded / Does not become a sword
Albany’s detachment from Ed, showing the corruption of natural bonds and humanity in ambition and revenge I hold you but a subject of this war, / Not as a brother
fate, linking to 1.1 “darker purpose” and “unburdened crawl toward death” (Kent) is this the promised end?
Ed proclaims how ridiculous Gloc’s superstition is as if we were villains on necessity, fools by heavenly compulsion…planetary influence…spherical predominance