Julius Caesar Assessment Task
Imagery ‘colors’ the language used by a character, and can therefore cast them (or their attitudes and beliefs), in a positive or negative light. Discuss in reference to two characters from the Shakespearian play Julius Caesar.
Julius Caesar, a play written by William Shakespeare in around 1599 and set in 44 BC; the year that Caesar was killed. Language plays a massive role in this play as it can sway our opinions on any context in the story. The language used by characters to describe other characters in the story creates imagery and thus allows us to picture how we feel about them. An example of this is the light in which we see Caesar himself. The way in which he talks about himself is very different to that of the way someone such as Cassius, who is the instigator in the conspiracy against Caesar.
One of the first examples of language used to cast characters in a certain light would be in act 1 scene 2 which is know as the ‘seduction scene’ where Cassius and Brutus are discussing their feelings. In this scene Cassius begins describing Caesar to Brutus as an equal, using phrases such as “We both have fed as well, and we can both endure the winter’s cold as well as he” thus putting the notion forward; why should Caesar be treated as this god, where he is but a man like you and I. He then goes on to describe Caesar as weak and quoting him “Help me Cassius, or I sink!” He also recites a time when they were in Spain; Caesar came down with a fever and was unwell. “How he did shake ‘tis true, this god did shake”. Cassius also uses the simile “as a sick girl” which also negates Caesars ‘strength’.
It is obvious that Cassius’ description in this passage casts Caesar in a negative light and a touch of envy is detected in his speech. However, this use of language is an important example as in turn, by using examples as evidence of Caesars weakness, it convinces Brutus that Caesar must be stopped. This shows that Brutus’ most.