© John William Waterhouse / Public Domain
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THE TEMPEST, thought to be the last play Shakespeare wrote, is not a staid late work but a drama of subversion. Prospero, the former Duke of Milan, was overthrown by his brother Antonio. As Antonio and Alonso, the King of Naples, and his brother Sebastian, sail close by the island, Prospero unleashes a storm that causes their ship to capsize.
Antonio and Sebastian conspire with some other shipwreck survivors and plot to kill Alonso in order to gain control over Naples upon their return. Meanwhile, Caliban, one of the two original island inhabitants enslaved by Prospero, joins forces with two drunk sailors and plans to rebel against the island’s ruler. At the same time, Shakespeare’s play is set on an „island of contemplation“ (Thorleifur Örn Arnarsson) – and hence in an invaluable place.