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Contrasts in Romeo and Juliet.

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Contrasts in Romeo and Juliet "O brawling love, O loving hate", conventionally Romeo and Juliet is a tragedy, but like most of Shakespeare's plays it contains other elements such as: comedy, love, hatred, conflict and also symbolism, however Shakespeare's use of contrast to capture the audience's interest and to create a multitude of other effects is the only method of creating interest that is consistently apparent throughout the diverse themes and concepts within the play. Shakespeare uses contrast in a variety of ways: to draw attention to or to illustrate specific points he is trying to make, to grasp the audience's attention and to add drama to key events or ideas in the play. One of the main contrasts in Romeo and Juliet is that between love and hate. Those two opposites contrast against each other and also within themselves; different types of love and hate present themselves within different situations and within different characters. In the case of Romeo when Mercutio is killed by Tybalt he avenges his death by killing Tybalt. His love for Mercutio or, Loyalty is what drives him to this. The loyalty and somewhat toughened love between family members can also sprout hatred towards the other family so much so that through loyalty "gentle Romeo" was driven to kill Tybalt, "here's much to do with hate, but more with love" shows how love in Romeo and Juliet often transformed to hate, and hate is sometimes not far detached from love. ...read more.


made to abide by restrictions lain down upon her "no more deep will I endart mine eye than your consent gives it strength to fly". However when they meet at night Romeo becomes joyous and content "So thrive my soul!" and Juliet is emancipated from her restricted life and for the first time in the play considers her own feelings and opinions and thinking for herself, trying to take control of her life; "Thou art thyself, though not a Montague. What's Montague?" The night is a shroud, which at numerous points in the play nurtures and protects the love between Romeo and Juliet "I have nights cloak to hide me". The darkness and the night signify happiness and salvation for Romeo and Juliet, but the coming of the day brings sorrow and separation; "it is the sparrow and not the lark" this line spoken by Juliet as the morning comes when she tries to prolong their time together by pretending it is still the night. This reversal between night and day plays with the assumptions of the audiences. It is intriguing and suggests that all may not be as it seems. But, more importantly it also symbolises how Romeo and Juliet's love still flourishes even against the great adversity of their family's fighting. ...read more.


The purely sexual love of Mercutio and the nurse, The purely loyal love of Benvolio and Sampson both contrast with Romeo and Juliet's love. At the end of the play Romeo and Juliet become almost the same character, dependent on each other. The melding together of the two lovers is a symbol of their love, which is made much more apparent to the audience because of the contrast between the hatred of the Montagues and the Capulets. When Romeo and Juliet fell in love their differences fade away; their love was a metaphor for the combining of two households at the end of the play. All of the contrast used in the play is used to create one main effect which is to illuminate how two seemingly different entities despite their surrounding can become one. It does this by contrasting many ideas, people and things to eventually create a similarity between them all. At the end of the play families are united, everything changes, contrast fades away as the play reaches its climax, although many things that before seemed so far separated now are joined, it ends with one stark contrast: between the horror of Romeo and Juliet's wasted life, wasted love, and the birth of the union between the families. Silas Davis English - Contrasts in Romeo and Juliet 11A1/11RL Page 3 of 3 Contrasts in Romeo and Juliet.doc Silas Davis 11A1/11RL Page 1 of 3 Contrasts in Romeo and Juliet.doc ...read more.

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