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In what is is act 3, scene 5 a key scene?

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In what way is act 3, scene 5 one of the key scenes in Shakespeare's play, "Romeo and Juliet" and how does Shakespeare create drama and tension in the scene? Act 3, scene 5 represents the very mood and feel of Shakespeare's play in its totality, it is almost the very turning point expected by the audience as tragedy is foretold by the prologue. After this scene, the plot unfolds in a downward spiral of heartache, death and suffering. With Romeo's departure from Verona, goes any strand of hope that the two lovers lives would end happily. After spending the night together, Romeo was to leave the very city in which his love, Juliet lives and the play is based. He had been banished for the vengeful though regretful murder of Tybalt, and the audience is constantly aware that he was to leave soon during the beginning of the scene, they are kept in anticipation of the real outcome for a few moments when Romeo and Juliet quarrel over him leaving. To ensure that the audience knows what feelings are building up within Juliet she is shown to have been in denial ...read more.


Juliet describes her anguish "I have an ill-divining soul" meaning that she has a bad feeling, a sinking if you will which penetrates to her very being or "soul". A most dramatic description in my opinion, but with Romeo's re assurance "Trust me love, in my eye so do you." comes a countering effect, making the audience unsure of what will happen. This maintains tension without diminishing the drama. After Lady Capulet arrives, she and Juliet talk of the murder of her late cousin; all the time she is showing sympathy for the killer, the killer being of course, Romeo. Once Juliet and her mother have finished talking, her father, Capulet and the nurse enter her chamber. Capulet has brought news, and to an audience he may appear quite pleased with himself with the news he brings. He is suggesting that Juliet, who is very much in love with Romeo, was to marry Paris. This of course was at the very will of Capulet alone, and not that of Juliet. Capulet and Lady Capulet had clearly discussed this arrangement prior to this time and reading Juliet like a book, Lady Capulet takes pity on her and tells her husband that Juliet is thankful but declines the offer of marriage to Paris. ...read more.


Given that an audience would have been witness to what had just transpired in the scene, this could be seen as almost neglectful. By the very end of the scene, Juliet is contemplating suicide should she never see Romeo again, saying "If all else fail, myself have power to die." Abandonment of hope like this reminds the audience of what the prologue has told them, that there will be no happy ending, while at the same time not assuring that this is how the story will end. Shakespeare being such a talented writer used some masterful imagery to enhance the drama of the scene and such well planned storytelling made sure that the audience was kept in suspense throughout. While all viewers knew the story was to be of tragic ends, no one could tell where of when this end would come, this was the key to maintaining the observer's interest in the plot. The scene is important no only because it contains some of the most story altering events but also because it is the most emotional, with the separation of the lovers and the conflict between father and daughter, this scene important because it excites the audience while disappointing them simultaneously. ...read more.

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