By Jane Smiley
A profitable Iowa farmer makes a decision to divide his farm among his 3 daughters. while the youngest items, she is minimize out of his will. This units off a sequence of occasions that brings darkish truths to mild and explodes long-suppressed feelings. An formidable reimagining of Shakespeare’s King Lear forged upon a regular American neighborhood within the overdue 20th century, A Thousand Acres takes on subject matters of fact, justice, love, and satisfaction, and divulges the gorgeous but treacherous topography of humanity.
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Extra info for A Thousand Acres: A Novel
In a similar way, although the legitimacy of his claim is stressed, the dramatist invites no particular sympathy for Edward IV at his accession. The rejoicing is confined to the three fierce brothers; dramatically the situation is 'thrown away'. Edward's first appearance after his coronation shows his undignified courtship of Lady Grey; the second of any length shows his share in the murder of the young Prince of Wales. Edward is certainly no glamorous hero returned at last to the throne of his fathers; beside his brother he foreshows already the weak and decadent figure-head he is to become in Richard III.
1 Henry IV, m, ii, 4-11 He is haunted by the memory of the past; indeed there is no play where more brilliant vignettes of past scenes are conjured up, often by Henry, although sometimes by the rebels too. Again and again the past intrudes on the present. Henry makes for himself the excuse of necessity, but he always sees himself and his past in terms of a guilt the Dead-Sea fruits of which he finally admits: ... — You, cousin Nevil, as I may remember— When Richard, with his eye brimful of tears, Then check* d and rated by Northumberland, Did speak these words, now proved a prophecy!
The Scroop executed by Henry was in fact the nephew of the archbishop. There is no reference to him in Holinshed in connection with the rebels, and he is not known to have been implicated in the northern rebellion. I can find no other historical character to whom Shakespeare could have been referring however, and his choice of the name is therefore significant. 2 35 THE LUCIFERIAN SIN: REBELLION dictated—in his view—condemnation and failure for the archetypal rebel, the king-murderer. Within the framework of the second tetralogy these two purposes are mutually exclusive, but the history of their own land assured both dramatist and audience that, while they could love their hero-king, yet they were assured of the fulfilment of the pattern of justice which they had been long taught to expect in the events of the world.