Thursday, October 27, 2016

The Conspiracy of Julius Caesar

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Were I to write a paper about Julius Caesar I think I would really like to go into the idea of conspiracy because throughout the play it seems that everyone conspires with one another: Caesar conspires with Antony to become emperor, Brutus conspires with Cassius to kill Caesar, etc. One line from the play really emphasizes this in a letter to Caesar that says, “Security gives way to/conspiracy” (2.3.7-8). It seems that everyone is confident in
his or her security but everyone is betrayed in the end.
Another thing that came up in the play that would be interesting to write about is this idea of free will v. fate, because so many people viewed Caesar as the man destined to become king, while the conspirators viewed him as a normal man and that destiny had nothing to do with it, leading them to despise Caesar and really the ideals that he was a symbol.
Another idea that I had that might not be a great English paper but perhaps a good history paper is comparison/contrast thesis between this betrayal of Caesar and that of other political betrayals (such as Lincoln). I think a compare/contrast between Caesar and Brutus would be really interesting to me as well; Brutus seems to be on a similar path as Caesar because both characters have friends that have aspirations for what they should do, Caesar should become king, Brutus should kill Caesar. Even people begin to shout for Brutus to be king at one point.

I think the research behind a play like Julius Caesar would be really fascinating because not only can you look for literary articles but you can also look at the actual history of what happened. I can delve more into the relationship with Brutus and Caesar, or the assassination itself. Because they talk as if Caesar and Brutus were best friends and I would love to see what was really entailed within that friendship. There just seems that there would be a lot of research to look into because for so much of our history, people have been obsessed with classicalism and trying to achieve this Roman ideal.


  1. I would be interested to see the comparison of Caesar's betrayal to another historical figure. Could any of the people who have betrayed historical leaders have read Shakespeare's play Julius Caesar? Can you see any similarities? Wouldn't that be interesting if someone could reenact Shakespeare's play and have it work? Sad, and slightly scary, but it would be interesting to know.

    1. That is an interesting thought because I guarentee John Wilkes Booth read Julius Caesar (seeing as he was a famous play actor). I wonder if he did relieve inspiration from Shakespeare.

  2. This YouTube video ( portrays a scene from Julius Caesar involving conspiracy. If you wanted a media source, this is an option. It is kind of amateur, and the playhouse must be really hot because everyone is fanning themselves, but I personally like to be able to visualize the scenes: I get more out of them.

  3. I just found this Prezi. I am not sure if it will be solid evidence, but it might give you some room to start and to ask some questions.

  4. I love the play Julius Caesar. This slideshow I think has a lot of interesting comments about the betrayals in Julius Caesar, not just Brutus's of Caesar himself, but Antony's of Brutus, Cassius's of Caesar, etc. It'd be interesting to look at for your paper.