Tuesday, September 3, 2019

A Man For All Seasons :: essays research papers

A "Man for All Seasons" is about a man so subtle and saintly that an actor who takes on the role must be able to project an almost superhuman presence. As is evident, the story is based on the life of Sir Thomas More, man of God and chancellor to the court of Henry VIII. The year is 1530 and from what I know, actors in this movie typically wear transparent half-masks and double up on roles. More was the only member of Henry VIII's government who would not be seduced or corrupted by Henry's threats. When the king asked More to sign an oath establishing the monarchy as head of the Church of England, More refused. He could not alter the law, he said. As the play progresses and More loses his wealth and even his freedom, he becomes almost self-righteous in his strict adherence to the law. Exasperating, but he must remain sympathetic as his family goes down with him into grief and poverty. The man who plays him must show both his affectionate disposition and his unshakable piety or the script would be just an exercise in mouthing lines. What I saw from the story was how the wheels turn in More's mind, the glow of warmth and the bleakness of despair that flicker across his face. It is not enough to paint him as a man. He must be a man among grovelers and syncophants, a towering presence. A man for all seasons, in other words. In most cases, I am compelled to say that one probably would not be able to successfully preserve their integrity in a situation such as Thomas More's. But in response to the question of whether or not a man can reasonably hope to do so, I believe that More's behavioral response exemplifies a positive confirmation of such. Even if it could not be reasonably expected for a man to maintain his integrity when consistently faced with such a dilemma, it would probably be asserted that such was understandable. Somewhat indirectly, this case reminds me of Aristotelian and Platonic discussions of virtue and the nature of man. Some philosophers would probably insist that man

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