27th March 2018

Quote on board

“I am a man more sinned against than sinning.”

This statement implies that King Lear is not sinning as much, as compared his subjects and others sinning against him. I am writing from a classic perspective.

I think that the statement is true because as he is the King, he is above all, meaning he can do what he likes and say what he likes under Gods reign. This statement means Lear believes everyone is wronging him, he is not wronging everyone, this in some way is true, and a classical approach would 100% agree, he is above women and his daughters and they must fall under him. He is king and how he believes society should act and what they should say comes down to him, others plotting against him is a sin, while him plotting against others is not. From a modern perspective, this is absurd, however in these days plotting against the high power was treason, so I can see where he is coming from. He has the right to say this and to most people would make perfect sense.

Join the conversation! 1 Comment

  1. Ashdon,

    I agree with you. Classically, Lear is definitely sinned against by his subjects and daughters (when considering the chain of being and the divine right of kings). However, I also think you can read this another way. His pride is his hamartia. His excessive need to feel the love of others and his over-reaction at those who do not flatter him is linked to his pride. When you think about this, does his pride (his sin) outweigh the sins committed against him? Do they balance out? Does this alter your view at all?

    Extend yourself and explain to me your view on the following: if Gloucester had delivered this line, what would your response have been?

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