• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

How does Shakespeare explore the theme of love in A Midsummer Night's Dream?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

How does Shakespeare explore the theme of love in A Midsummer Night's Dream? In the play 'A Midsummer Night's Dream' many aspects of love are explored. In this essay I will be exploring how Shakespeare conveys the theme of love including illusion, confusion, escape, harmony and lust. Historically, it has been suggested that 'A Midsummer Night's Dream' was written for a wedding, signifying the importance of love in this play, however there is no real evidence to prove this myth. Rather, the Lord Chamberlain's men performed 'A Midsummer Night's Dream' on the London stage. Shakespeare creates a situation in which two pairs of young lovers, Lysander and Hermia, are forced to elope from the oppressive authority of their Elders, here we see Lysander asking Hermia to flee to the woods, "there gentle Hermia may I marry thee; and to that place the sharp Athenian law cannot pursue us" Freedom is not permitted in Athens, therefore the two lovers plan to escape into the woods. Hermia has two options given from her oppressive father, 'either to die the death, or to abjure for ever in society of men'. She disobeys his commands. ...read more.

Middle

Puk's language is full of natural images but containing within them the drama of the forest. 'And now they never met in groove or green, by fountain clear or spangled starlight sheen'. Love in the woods is lustful and infatuated. Confusion is created, allowing the readers to be drawn into the play. Puk's mischievousness and the error of his judgement are used as comic relief. Lightening the play, to an extent that the audience will be more eager to find out what happens next. In the woods, we learn that the illusion of love can often lead to anger and jealousy. In act 3, scene 2, we see the two lovers, Hermia and Lysander, having an argument, 'hang off, thou cat, thou burr, vile thing, get loose'. Shakespeare cleverly makes the once lovers, Hermia and Lysander insult each other, for the fact that 'the course of true love never did run smooth'. Shakespeare not only uses confusion to explore the theme of love, he also substitutes love for lust, which demonstrates how love can become an illusion. ...read more.

Conclusion

Here the heart broken Thisbe is comparing her dead lover to a variety of flowers, fruits and vegetables, 'these lily lips, this cherry nose'. Shakespeare uses such exaggeration in the language to ease the tensions, and to soften the play so that the ending is optimistic rather than a tragic, possibly if performed for a wedding. The wedding at the end of the play, suggests that Shakespeare's exploration of the theme of love is to bring us closer to the nature of the reconciliation harmony which it embodies. This is because everyone is peacefully engaging with each other and enjoying the play, since the conflict has been resolved. Not only this, but different social classes emerge together. This is paralleled with, the relationship between Titaina and Oberon. Shakespeare explores the theme of love by the tensions built up to create comic resolutions, therefore helping to diffuse possibly unpleasant impact of themes. Since it turns out to be a dream, the audience will not feel offended by the aspects Shakespeare explored. Finally, Shakespeare's exploration of love is an acknowledgement of its complex and powerful nature. Potentially both tragic and comic but never dull. ?? ?? ?? ?? Chinyere Akosim ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Love Poetry section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Love Poetry essays

  1. "The course of true love ne'er runs smooth" - To what extent do you ...

    about to be forced to marry him or die, she says she would rather die than marry anyone but Lysander! This may be similar to how Hippolyta and Theseus felt originally but their relationship works in the end so the audience begins to wonder if Egeus is correct and if

  2. Explore the Presentation of Different Kinds of Love In a Room With a View ...

    like a cross...it gave me courage and I fought for you more than I fought for Greece". Nevertheless, Mandras only had an image of Pelagia, an image he thought he knew and understood well, an image he thought he loved, "unfortunately my dream of Pelagia was better than Pelagia herself".

  1. Love is a very common theme in poetry. By closely examining the ways in ...

    physical beauty decays This stresses to the reader that love is unchangeable. Shakespeare uses his main method of style again towards the end of the sestet when the relationship between love and time is personified, " Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks /But bears it out even to the edge of doom.

  2. How does Shakespeare use love to create drama and interest in 'A Midsummer Night's ...

    In the story, the supreme ruler of Athens, Theseus ends up marrying Hippolyta, the Queen of the Amazons. However, during the whole story, Hippolyta never thoroughly discusses her feelings and ideas about the marriage. Theseus shows his love to Hippolyta: '"Now, fair Hippolyta, our nuptial hour Draws on apace; four

  1. The Relationship between Nature and Love in

    and flowers, here animated nature, raise in his mind's eye the question of nature's part in the larger scheme. In a microcosmic way may not all nature be similar in function to the function provided by the Aeolian Harp (Radley 45)?"

  2. A Midsummer Night's Dream - an example of a Shakespearian comedy

    Shakespeare jumps between the two during this play. The comic tone occurs when the mechanicals are on-stage, while the serious tone is when either the nobles or the magicals are on-stage. Although, sometimes with the magicals, the play can turn comical, for they can be quite silly.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work