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Examine Shakespeare's presentation of the Nurse with particular reference to Act 1 Scene 3, Act 2 Scene 5 and Act 3 Scene 5

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Introduction

Examine Shakespeare's presentation of the Nurse with particular reference to Act 1 Scene 3, Act 2 Scene 5 and Act 3 Scene 5 Shakespeare's presentation of the Nurse of the Nurse is a key to the audience's understanding of the play because she makes major links between the characters. She is a memorable character as she is likeable although the audience's view of her frequently changes. Shakespeare uses her to bring humour into the play to make the play appealing to all of the audience. She is also used as a messenger in the play, another reason why she is such an important character. She is very disrespectful towards Lady Capulet and argues with Lord Capulet. In contrast, however, she is very affectionate towards Juliet and acts as a second mother. Again this demonstrates Shakespeare's constant change in his presentation of the Nurse's behaviour. ...read more.

Middle

Overall the audience sees her as rude, loud and she can be annoying, the affection and fondness she has for Juliet is a factor, which makes the audience forgive and sympathise with her. In act 2 Scene 5, the Nurse's behaviour and relationship with Juliet affects the audiences perception of her. She is very manipulative in this scene, making Juliet wait to tell her the good news she has for her. An example of this is when the Nurse says; 'Your love says, like an honest gentleman, And a courteous, and a kind, and a handsome And I warrant a virtuous - where is your mother?' Although this is not malicious manipulation, it keeps Juliet waiting when she is already impatient. Although she seems to be being unkind to Juliet, she still shows signs of fondness and affection towards her. She shows this by saying Romeo is 'not the flower of courtesy, but I'll warrant him' showing she cares about to whom Juliet is wed but allows the marriage to go ahead because Juliet has feelings for him. ...read more.

Conclusion

Whilst in front of Lord and Lady Capulet the Nurse is brave, loyal and defends Juliet by arguing with Lord Capulet, However when they are alone in private she contradicts herself again by saying Juliet should do what her father says. This makes the audience feel betrayed as Juliet feels the same. In the three scenes Shakespeare demonstrates fully his literal genius by using the Nurse in several ways. He creates a vital link between the audience and Juliet in the form of the Nurse because she puts the audience in Juliet's position, frequently forcing the audience to feel Juliet's emotions therefore further engaging the audience into the play. The Nurse has a huge presence on the stage because of her loud and garrulous ways, and the audience's feelings towards the Nurse also changes repeatedly, making the audience further aware of this presence. Also by bringing humour the nurse gives the play more appeal to the audience. Without the Nurse many of the things that make the play so dramatic and engaging would not be possible. ...read more.

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