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Is Violence and Conflict central to the plot of Romeo and Juliet?

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Is Violence and conflict central to Romeo and Juliet? "What is in a name? A rose by any other name would smell as sweet", a quote clearly representing Juliet's love and confusion, as during that time, Juliet was questioning her love for Romeo, and thereby portraying her inner conflict. Along with the plot twists this is what Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet is about. However, there is also a darker side to the story, and this is the large amount of conflict and violence. This essay will show that "Romeo and Juliet" does indeed, have a lot of violence in it. As well as examine the language used, discuss the way the play is written, and aim to conclude all the given ideas. In view of my argument, there are three major scenes before the last which incorporate violence into them, act one, scene one, act three, scene one, and act three, scene five, and the last scene, act five, scene three . In these scenes, there is an extreme amount of violence. It is through these scenes, that we will determine that Romeo and Juliet is indeed a violent play. Conflict is embedded deep into the play, even through the introduction of it early on. "Ay, while you live, draw your neck out o' the collar", by Gregory saying this, it shows that he is willing to fight to the death. ...read more.


The next form of violence in the play is the use of verbal fighting, in act three scene one, between Tybalt and Mercutio. "Consort! What, dost thou make us minstrels?". This quote clearly portrays the aggression that Mercutio is showing toward Tybalt, and he takes his accusations and subverts them. If this fight had not take place, then Mercutio would never have been so aggravated as to have taken Tybalt on in a duel. Furthermore, the next issue to address is the emotional conflict that Romeo faces, which is a reflection of the verbal fighting, when Tybalt calls Romeo a villain and thereby insults his honour, Romeo is faced with an extremely difficult choice. "Tybalt, the reason that I have to love thee Doth much excuse the appertaining rage? To such a greeting: villain am I none; Therefore farewell; I see thou know'st me not". This quote shows that Romeo is caught in conflict". If he does not answer back to Tybalt, he would be regarded as a coward, and he will bring shame upon his family and his reputation. On the other hand, if he does retaliate, he will kill Juliet's cousin, which will anger the Capulets further and fuel the war, thereby putting pressure on his relationship with Juliet. Furthermore in this scene, there is also a large amount of physical violence that takes place. "Forbidden bandying in Verona streets: Hold, Tybalt! ...read more.


As conflict was the reason that caused the violence in the first place, it was only fitting that violence ended the play, with the death of Juliet. On the other hand, critics may argue that violence and conflict is not at all a major part in the play. This is because Shakespeare intended Romeo and Juliet to be a love story in the first place, and since this is a huge theme and the genre, it could make the violence in the play not very important at all. The violence could also become unimportant, as there are also many other themes within the play, such as, status, power, challenging authority, and the love triangle between Paris, Juliet and Romeo. However, without violence and conflict to create and highlight these factors, Romeo and Juliet would lose all of its originality. In conclusion, I think that violence and conflict is an extremely important part of Romeo and Juliet. If there was no violence and conflict, then the final events would never have unfolded. Violence and conflict are the two things that help the events in the play to link together, for example, if Romeo's inner conflict had not made him go to Rosaline's party, he never would have angered Tybalt, and Tybalt would never have had a reason to go looking for Romeo, and Mercutio would never have died. The violence and conflict acts as links in the chain of events throughout the play. .Ultimately, without these two factors, Romeo and Juliet would never exist! ...read more.

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