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Analyse Shakespeare’s use of dramatic devices in Act 5 Scene 3 of Romeo and Juliet with reference to the socio-historical context of the play.

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Introduction

Analyse Shakespeare's use of dramatic devices in Act 5 Scene 3 of Romeo and Juliet with reference to the socio-historical context of the play. Shakespeare uses many dramatic devices throughout the play of Romeo and Juliet. However, most of these devices are present in Act 5 Scene 3. This is because it is the final scene, and therefore requires drama. Firstly, we must look at the play on a whole. There are many dramatic devices that lead the audience to the final scene. We see evidence of drama before the last scene, throughout the play. For example, in the beginning in the prologue there is mention of death several times: "misadventured piteous overthrows, doth with their death bury their parent's strife", "the fearful passage of their death-marked love." This device has influenced the story by generating drama. This has been done to tell the audience to expect deaths and drama. Another war drama is developed is in street brawls, clashes, duels, conflict etc. These are throughout the play and keep the audience poised on the story and keep the audience on their toes. In the first scene, there is a street brawl between Tybalt and Benvolio, Tybalt starting the fight: "As I hate hell, all Montagues, and thee. Have at thee coward!" This is another of Shakespeare's devices of drama. Fighting so early on in the play would be an example of things to come and would shock the audience as they would be surprised to see a fight so early on in the play. ...read more.

Middle

However, he also includes grotesque imagery: "thy canopy is dust and stones", "with digging up of graves" and "with tears distilled by moans." Romeo does practically the same by developing these grotesque images further: "By heaven I will tear thee joint by joint, and strew this hungry churchyard with thy limbs. The time and my intents are savage-wild, more fierce and more inexorable far than empty tigers, or that roaring sea.", "Thou destestable may, thou womb of death, gorged with the dearest morsel of the earth, thus I enforce thy rotten jaws to open." And "with worms that are thy chamber-maids" However, just like Paris, he compensates this slightly by describing to Juliet's beauty: "For here lies Juliet and her beauty makes this vault a feasting presence full of light", "Death that hath sucked the honey of thy breath hath had no power yet upon thy beauty.", "Though are not conquered; beauty's ensign yet in crimson in thy lips and in thy cheeks,". This is a key creator of drama as the combination of talking about the grotesquery of the death and the beauty of Juliet contradict and contrast each other, and this conflict is a representation of the conflict between the families, and the confusion and distortion that both Romeo and Paris where experiencing at the time. Paris' speech is shorter than Romeo's, and Romeo's has more meaning and emotion than Paris'. ...read more.

Conclusion

This shows how angry they were at each other and how passionate that they were for Juliet because they were willing to fight over the body of a dead woman. However, after the fight Romeo agrees to lay Paris next to Juliet, which shows how he can change so quickly. This probably occurred because it is now only Romeo and Juliet together, but also that this is the second person he has killed in the story, and is probably very upset and confused as he Paris, and he might think that Juliet's death may have been his fault as well. We have already shown how Romeo personifies death. But Romeo also describes and feels death in many other ways other than personification that also lead to how Romeo's soliloquey generates drama. Romeo shows that he is afraid: "Let them affright thee" and that death is lustful: "That unsubstantial death is amorous". Because of this burden he is carrying, the death in all of its sin and ugliness is a great relief for Romeo: "Thou desperate pilot, now at once run on the dashing rocks thy sea-sick weary bark.". His opinions and his talk of death create tension in the audience as the talk of death itself is very dramatic and that the audience know that he will commit suicide soon, and death is also dramatic. Fate and tragedy are very large dramatic features of the play and is developed throughout, even in the prologue to the end. In Shakespearean days, the stars were used to read futures, like modern day horoscopes. ...read more.

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