The Tragic Hero of the Post-Classical Renaissance
English drama spearheaded by William Shakespeare, is dominated by the Post-Classical Renaissance. Pre-renaissance drama in England was essentially allegorical plays extolling Christian values. This paper therefore critically looks at how Shakespearean tragic hero is defined and portrayed. The paper, using textual analysis, provides extracts from William Shakespeare’s King Lear as the main text to present King Lear as tragic hero. The study shows that the post-classical renaissance period portrays the tragic hero on the basis of weakness of character and is different from the Aristotelian concept of tragedy as hamartia, a going wrong.
Key words: Shakespeare; Renaissance; Moral theory; King Lear
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