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A play which explores the effect of relationships in a family and community is Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare

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English Essay Task: Choose a play which explores relationships in a family/community. What strengths and/or weaknesses are apparent in these relationships and what is the overall effect on the family/community. A play which explores the effect of relationships in a family and community is ?Romeo and Juliet? by William Shakespeare. The relationship between Romeo and Juliet, themselves, is key to the play and this relationship also embodies the family feud discussed in the play. Shakespeare conveys the lovers? relationship as one built upon utter trust and devotion. Yet it is ill-fated due to the ancient feud between their families, the Montagues and the Capulets. The family grudge holds great importance and affects the lives of every citizen in the town of Verona. In the beginning of the play we are introduced to both the lovers. Romeo is portrayed as a depressed and melancholic person as the girl he loves does not love him back and Juliet as a girl who is unwilling to be married to a suitor of her parent?s choice. ...read more.


Shakespeare?s use of this ?love at first sight? scenario emphasises that the young lovers have and instant and deep connection. This emphasises the strength of their devotion to each other. In the balcony scene, although Romeo and Juliet have only known each other for a short while, their love is very intense. Shakespeare uses various images to convey this: ?Two of the fairest stars...do entreat her eyes? Juliet?s eyes are being compared to twinkling stars which shows how much Romeo loves her. Romeo believes Juliet to be the most beautiful woman he has ever seen and this image conveys this. This symbolises their strong love for each other. Later on we see that Romeo is overcome by his love for Juliet and he even risks his life to see her. When a fight starts to form in the street Romeo makes it clear that he is not interested in fighting: ?Tybalt, the reason I have to love thee Doth much excuse the appertaining rage? Even though the idea of being loyal to your own family is prominent throughout the play, Romeo is willing to forget the family feud and ?love? his enemies for Juliet?s sake. ...read more.


It is clear from this why Romeo and Juliet?s relationship would be a problem as the feud has such a strong grip on society that there is no way of them being together other than in secret. Another scene in which the power of the feud comes through is when everyone is discussing what must be the consequence of Romeo?s actions: ?Romeo slew Tybalt. Romeo must not live? Lady Capulet?s harsh words are conveying how the feud makes everyone stand their ground and the idea of forgive and forget is not even considered. The feud is the reason for Romeo and Juliet?s poor relationship as their families are so hostile towards each other. The feud causes the division in their community and the separation of the two families. In the end, it is only after the death of both Romeo and Juliet, a huge sacrifice, that their families reconcile and agree to live in peace. Romeo and Juliet?s relationship is one that is powerful yet it is always plagued by the feud of their families. Shakespeare?s use of imagery and symbolism to convey their relationship is highly powerful and only intensifies the bond between them. ...read more.

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