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History depends on interpretation and interpretation depends on context King Lear can be seen in many contexts and interpreted as a political statement a comment on family dynamics or a look at the battle of good versus evil It can be analysed to mean different things It is easy to forget that King Lear is a play about family but I think the play at its deepest level is commenting on family and the changing dynamics of families as the age In interpreting King Lear this way many features that can change context must be taken into account this includes costuming lighting music and setting I think the two scenes which illustrate this interpretation the best are the reconciliation of Lear and Cordelia Act 4 Scene 7 and the closing scene Act 5 Scene 3 In Act 4 Scene 7 Cordelia returns from France to see her father Lear is sleeping and Cordelia wishes that when he wakes he will be cured of his insanity She wakes him and Lear is confused initially thinking she is an angel When he realises that she is Cordelia he is stunned and ashamed she offers her love to him and appearing more rational for the first time since the storm scene he asks for Cordelias forgiveness Pray you now forget and forgive I am old and foolish This is Lear recognition of his mistake but it is too late he has already lost everything Act 4 ends with Lear and Cordelias reconciliation This scene is very important to the ending of the play because it allows Lear peace in accepting death although he has to suffer Cordelias death first In Eyres version of this scene it is apparent that he also wished to focus on the family ties within this monarchy When Cordelia is about to approach the sleeping Lear she is full of apprehension and fear She is so afraid of Lear
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