Malvolio Argumentative Essay

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“I will be proud, I will read politic authors, I will baffle Sir Toby, I will wash off gross acquaintance, I will be point-devise the very man” (II. v. 165-167). This statement is not one that a strict Puritan like Malvolio should be saying. Malvolio is talking about all the things he would be and do if he married Olivia. Puritans were against all things frivolous and flippant. Here Malvolio is daydreaming about bossing Sir Toby around and becoming a more educated and respected person. A Puritan should not wish these things. Malvolio makes a mockery of the people of his religion. Shakespeare may have done this to poke fun at the Puritans, who during his time period would have despised the Globe Theatre and all of Shakespeare’s works, as they…show more content…
At the end of act II, he is shown daydreaming about all the perks that come with marrying Olivia and becoming a count, such as “calling (his) officers, in (a) branched velvet gown”(II. v. 46-47). Once he is alone with his thoughts Malvolio’s true colors show. He wants nothing more than to become Olivia’s husband and gain a title, giving him power and wealth. This is where the tides start to turn on Malvolio’s character and his non-Puritan side is coming out. Later in the scene, after he mistakes the love letter to be about him, Malvolio is “driven to the habits of (Olivia’s) liking” which causes him to go against his strict Puritan ways to impress her (II. v. 173). Before, Malvolio would have never done something as silly as smiling and wearing yellow stockings, but now his whole view has changed because he is blindsided by his love for Olivia. Malvolio’s oblivion to the fact that Maria and Sir Toby are just playing a prank on him starts to show Shakespeare’s mockery of people of the Puritan religion. Malvolio is making a fool of himself quoting the letter, “Some are born great… some achieve greatness” to Olivia, who has no idea what he is talking about (III. iv. 45-47). This shows Malvolio’s blatant disregard for his religion and is now completely focused on himself and his wishes. Shakespeare is actually ridiculing the Puritan religion in this scene. He makes the only Puritan character seem to go mad as the play

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