Discussion Question #1 for Moliere's Tartuffe (Act 4, Scene 5 to the end of Act 5), pp. 56-69
1. When Elmire fakes her love for Tartuffe, he says, "If Heaven is all that holds you back, don't worry./ I can remove that hindrance in a hurry" (4.5. 95-96, p. 58). What does he mean by "that hindrance"? What does Tartuffe's suggestion to Elmire say about him? What do you think of her way of dealing with Tartuffe's scandalous offer and her idea of exposing Tartuffe's sexual hypocrisy? How would you characterize Elmire?
2. Discussion Question #2 for Moliere's Tartuffe (Act 4, Scene 5 to the end of Act 5), pp. 56-69
Why does Orgon distrust what Elmire has told him about Tartuffe until he witnesses Tartuffe's amorous advances with his own eyes? Is Orgon unwilling to accept his misjudgment of Tartuffe, or is he deceived by Tartuffe's tactful scheme and pretense of being a devout Christian? Upon witnessing [empirical evidence] Tartuffe’s religious hypocrisy, Orgon tells him: “I’ve long suspected you, had a feeling/That soon I’d catch you at your double-dealing” (4.7.9-10, p. 59). Why do you think Orgon is telling Tartuffe like this? Is he saying the truth? Is Orgon also hypocritical? Any textual evidence?
3. Discussion Question #3 for Moliere's Tartuffe (Act 4, Scene 5 to the end of Act 5), pp. 56-69
Orgon tells Cleante about his reason for taking in Tartuffe: "I took him in, a hungry beggar and then…/Enough, by God! I'm through with pious men:/ Henceforth I'll hate the whole false brotherhood./ And persecute them worse than Satan could" (5.1.31-34, p. 61). Did Orgon take Tartuffe to his house purely out of charity? Did Orgon have any other reasons for taking in Tartuffe? Why did Orgon leave a secret box (which is full of secret papers that belong to his friend Argas, who was disloyal to the king and fled the country) to Tartuffe? Is Orgon a victim of Tartuffe's scheme here? Do you think Moliere also makes fun of Orgon in the play? Is Orgon blameless for all the troubles he has caused to his family members? What does Cleante criticize about Orgon?
4. Reading Response to Moliere's play Tartuffe (1669) – 60 points
Length: About 350 words (one long paragraph in double-space) (*Your response does not need to have an intro, body, and conclusion.)
*Writing tip: Please write about 500 words as a draft and then cut out an unimportant part or the plot summary.
Penalties for late submissions: 1 day late (10 points off); two days late (20 points off)
*Note: What I look for is your detailed interpretation and thorough analysis supported by effective textual evidence – (i.e.) WHY (not How) a character acted the way he/she did. Your choice of quotes and analysis of the quotes are the most important parts of this response.
*Do not summarize the plot (what happened to the characters) for this reading response. Writing in general about the play without answering the questions in the prompt will get a zero point.
1. Italicize the title of Moliere's play Tartuffe and put the publication year 1669 -(e.g.) Moliere's play Tartuffe (1669).
2. Do not use expressions, such as "I think," "you see," or "we know" in your analysis.
3. Please include at least 2 textual examples (direct quotes–one or two lines). Please do not cite more than 3 lines for each quote (use the ellipsis to remove unimportant parts within the quote).
4. Use an MLA in-text citation for quotations (put Act #, Scene #, and line # in parentheses) and include the character's name before the quote -(i.e.) Cleante tells Orgon: "These charlatans, I say, whose pilgrim souls/ Proceed, by way of Heaven, toward earthly goals" (1.5.111-112).
5. Please make sure your analysis of the play is consistent, logically connected, and supported by convincing textual examples (at least two direct quotes)
*Please answer the following questions in the prompt, and upload your response in a Word document (doc. or docx format) to Assignments.
Reading Response on Moliere's play Tartuffe (1669)
Moliere's play Tartuffe (1669) is considered one of the representative works of the Enlightenment era, known as the Age of Reason. Moliere uses satire as a literary weapon to expose social issues and corruption during the time. What do you think Moliere satirizes in Tartuffe? Why do Dorine and Cleante call Tartuffe a "fraud"? What does Tartuffe aim to get by being part of Orgon's family? What does Tartuffe represent in this play, and what does Cleante criticize about Orgon? Why is Orgon unable to see Tartuffe's false piety and hypocrisy? Why did Orgon trust Tartuffe without question? What do you think Moliere is exposing through Tartuffe as well as mocking Orgon's blind belief in Tartuffe? Your interpretation and analysis of the play should be logically connected and supported by effective textual examples (at least two direct quotes – one or two lines only). Please be sure to provide your detailed analysis of the play.