On The Postmodernist Elements in Shakespeare's The Tempest

Payyam Abbasi, Ali Saeedi


Having been discussed for more than four centuries, Shakespeare (1564-1616), believed by many critics to be the most important English dramatist, is still inexhaustible. Through these years and especially in the twentieth century, many different approaches have been applied to his plays. This study is an attempt to have a postmodernist reading of The Tempest (1610). Based on the definition and characterization of postmodernism by Ihab Hassan and Brian McHale, and through a careful language analysis, the postmodernist elements in the speeches of characters are detected and discussed. By using postmodernist elements and techniques such as puns, wordplays, paradoxes, and versal prose, the language becomes anarchic, playful, disperse, polymorphous and indeterminate. By finding and analyzing these features in the language of the play it becomes arguable that The Tempest is a postmodern comedy.


Shakespeare; The Tempest; Language; Postmodern; Wordplay

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.21533/epiphany.v7i1.95


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