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Love as a Cause of Suffering - Twelfth Night is a romantic comedy, and romantic love is the play's main focus.

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Introduction

��ࡱ�>�� LN����K�������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������������5@ ��0HGbjbj�2�2 (d�X�X�<�������������������8� �\��vZZZZZZZZ$ R_�<�ZZZZZ<��ZZQ���Z�Z�Z�Z������ZN @fDr���Zd�g0�� � ������� �� ZZ�ZZZZZ<<�Twelfth Night Advanced Search | FAQ Home > Free Study Aids > Study Guides > Shakespeare > Twelfth Night > Themes, Motifs, and Symbols - Navigate Here - Context Plot Overview Characters Character Analysis Themes --- I.i-ii I.ii-iv I.v II.i-ii II.iii-iv II.v III.i-iii III.iv IV.i-iii V.i --- Quotations Key Facts Study Questions Quiz Further Reading Edition Themes, Motifs, and Symbols Themes Themes are the fundamental and often universal ideas explored in a literary work. Love as a Cause of Suffering - Twelfth Night is a romantic comedy, and romantic love is the play's main focus. Despite the fact that the play offers a happy ending, in which the various lovers find one another and achieve wedded bliss, Shakespeare shows that love can cause pain. Many of the characters seem to view love as a kind of curse, a feeling that attacks its victims suddenly and disruptively. Various characters claim to suffer painfully from being in love, or, rather, from the pangs of unrequited love. At one point, Orsino depicts love dolefully as an "appetite" that he wants to satisfy and cannot (I.i.1�3); at another point, he calls his desires "fell and cruel hounds" (I.i.21). Olivia, more bluntly, describes love as a "plague" from which she suffers terribly (I.v.265). ...read more.

Middle

attempt to trick the steward. Sir Andrew's letter demanding a duel with Cesario, meanwhile, is meant seriously, but because it is so appallingly stupid, Sir Toby does not deliver it, rendering it extraneous. Malvolio's missive, sent by way of Feste from the dark room in which he is imprisoned, ultimately works to undo the confusion caused by Maria's forged letter and to free Malvolio from his imprisonment. But letters are not the only kind of messages that characters employ to communicate with one another. Individuals can be employed in the place of written communication�Orsino repeatedly sends Cesario, for instance, to deliver messages to Olivia. Objects can function as messages between people as well: Olivia sends Malvolio after Cesario with a ring, to tell the page that she loves him, and follows the ring up with further gifts, which symbolize her romantic attachment. Messages can convey important information, but they also create the potential for miscommunication and confusion�especially with characters like Maria and Sir Toby manipulating the information. Madness - No one is truly insane in Twelfth Night, yet a number of characters are accused of being mad, and a current of insanity or zaniness runs through the action of the play. After Sir Toby and Maria dupe Malvolio into believing that Olivia loves him, Malvolio behaves so bizarrely that he is assumed to be mad and is locked away in a dark room. ...read more.

Conclusion

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