The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 9.1053 Wednesday, 28 October 1998.
Date: Monday, 26 Oct 1998 12:41:13 -0600
I am involved in a discussion regarding Lear and would like some help.
Specifically, I am interested in determining what Lear "gives up" in
1.1. It seems clear that he gives up his land (1.1.31-32), but then in
1.1.43-44 there is: "...we will divest us, both of rule,/Interest of
territory, cares of state,--" Is this a contradiction to the later
1.1.131-32: "Only we still retain/The name, and all the additions to a
king;"? Any help will be greatly appreciated.
Let me make my question/position a bit more clear. I realize that there
is a "literal" difference between abdicating title and responsibility
within the fiction of the play. That is, of course, part of the message;
that title and responsibility are inseparable. I guess what is not clear
is how, even within the fiction of the play, this is something other
characters would allow/believe/accept.