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The Winter's Tale by William Shakespeare-Free MonkeyNotes Study Guide
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1. The apparent lack of motivation for Leontes' jealousy is a serious weakness in the play. Explain why you agree or disagree with this statement.

2. Forgiveness and reconciliation are the keynotes of The Winter's Tale. Explain how these Themes are developed in the play 3. Comment on the relationship between Nature and Art in the play.

4. Explain the plot structure of The Winter's Tale. Who are the main catalysts of the plot?

5. Explain whether the language of The Winter's Tale is appropriate and why.

6. Explain Shakespeare's use of prose and verse in the play. 7. How does the figure of Autolycus and the clown figure into the play? What is their function?

8. Provide an interpretation of the major imagery and symbolism in The Winter's Tale.

9. Examine the character of Leontes. Is he the same man at the end of the play that he was at the beginning? Explain.


The study of literature is not like the study of math or science, or even history. While those disciplines are based largely upon fact, the study of literature is based upon interpretation and analysis. There are no clear-cut answers in literature, outside of the factual information about an author's life and the basic information about setting and characterization in a piece of literature. The rest is a highly subjective reading of what an author has written; each person brings a different set of values and a different background to the reading. As a result, no two people see the piece of literature in exactly the same light, and few critics agree on everything about a book or an author.

In this set of PinkMonkey® Literature Notes for a well-known piece of literature, we at have tried to give an objective literary analysis based upon the information actually found in the novel, book, or play. In the end, however, it is an individual interpretation, but one that we feel can be readily supported by the information that is presented in the guide. In your course of literature study, you or your professor/teacher may come up with a different interpretation of the mood or the theme or the conflict. Your interpretation, if it can be logically supported with information contained within the piece of literature, is just as correct as ours. So is the interpretation of your teacher or professor.

Literature is simply not a black or white situation; instead, there are many gray areas that are open to varying analyses. Your task is to come up with your own analysis that you can logically defend. Hopefully, these PinkMonkey® Literature Notes will help you to accomplish that goal.

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