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Discuss how far you feel that Shakespeare presents the play

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Introduction

Discuss how far you feel that Shakespeare presents the play "Romeo And Juliet" as a dramatic tragedy based on the themes of love and hate William Shakespeare was born in Stratford-upon-Avon on or around April 23, 1564 and was baptised at the Holy Trinity, April 26, 1564. Shakespeare's parents were John and Mary Arden Shakespeare. On November 27, 1582, Shakespeare married Anne Hathaway who was eight years older than him. Their first daughter Susanna, was born around May 26, 1583 and Hamnet and Judith, twins, were born around February 2, 1585. Around 1592, it is believed that Shakespeare's Henry VI was performed at the Rose Theatre in London. By 1594 Shakespeare had rapidly risen as one of the top playwrights of the time. In August of 1596 his son Hamnet died. In 1599, the Globe Theatre was built. Shakespeare was one of the investors for this new theatre. On April 23, 1616, Shakespeare died. Shakespeare lived in the Elizabethan Era, in those days, parents expected to be obeyed and they even decided who their children should marry. Shakespeare grew up, acted in and wrote for a very different theatre from what we have today. Elizabethan actors had very different ideas on how to create the illusion of reality and there was no front curtain separating the audience from the stage. The plays were performed in daylight and female parts were written for young actors and boys. Costumes were very important and would separate the rich, who would wear silk, linen or woollen clothing, and the poor who would wear simple clothes of leather or wool. Very little scenery was used other than an occasional backcloth. A potted tree would symbolise a forest, a few plates an inn. ...read more.

Middle

The Nurse has raised Juliet as if she were her own daughter. It was a very common feature in the aristocratic society in Elizabethan times for a nurse to raise children in the family. For Juliet the Nurse is like her best friend. Romeo has the Friar to confide in and the Friar acts like a father to Romeo. Friar Lawrence marries the couple and tries to help them whenever possible. He wants the best for them and thinks that if they marry then possibly the feuding will end; "In one respect I�ll thy assistant be: For this may so happy prove To turn your households� rancour to pure love" The friar tells Romeo not to rush things with Juliet, but when Romeo asks him to marry them he agrees. The friar approves of their love and truly cares about what happens to Romeo and Juliet. The friar and Nurse effectively act as substitute parents by comforting and advising the lovers. Juliet and her mother, Lady Capulet, however, do not seem to have such a close relationship. It is shown that the Nurse obviously has a closer relationship with Juliet than Lady Capulet when Lady Capulet doesn't know how old Juliet and the Nurse does. "Tis since the earthquake now eleven years And she was weaned, I never shall forget it, Of all the days of the year, upon that day; For I had then laid wormwood to my dug". This quote also shows that the Nurse weaned Juliet as a baby and breastfed her, she's practically her mother. The Nurse has the closer relationship with Juliet because she is the one who has brought her up. ...read more.

Conclusion

Because most people were not very well educated, they were frightened by the power of fate. The role of fate in Romeo and Juliet is a very big one. On top of everything else they were fighting fate. They are "star crossed lovers" from the start. Fate is against them. Juliet feels that fate was cruel to make her love an enemy, "my only love spring from my only hate". It was believed that curses had alot of power and Mercutio curses both their houses, "a plague a'both their houses". He says this curse three times making it more powerful. Even before the Capulet party Romeo has a feeling he shouldn't go, "My mind misgives the consequence yet hanging in the stars". Another example of the role of fate is when Juliet says her wedding bed will be her death bed,"Or if you do not, make the bridal bed, In that dim monument where Tybalt lies.". This became true, but the plan could've worked, and Juliet could've woke up earlier, but fate was always against them and is conspiring. Throughout the play all the themes of love, hate, tragedy and fate all add to full effect of the play. None are any are more important than others because without any of them the play wouldn't be what it is. The roles of love and hate are huge, the love between Romeo and Juliet and the family feud. Also the theme of fate, which is revealed right from the start in the very first sonnet, runs through the whole play, and in the meeting of Romeo and Juliet and eventually is what makes the play turn out to be a tragedy. And Romeo and Juliet being a tragedy, it gives the play a sad ending adding emotion and making it the tragic love tale. ...read more.

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