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Key Qualities of Youth in a Midsummer Night's Dream

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Key Qualities of Youth in A Midsummer Night's Dream The key qualities of youth differ on the time of age they are in because children of different ages behave in different ways. However, in Shakespeare's play, A Midsummer Night's Dream, the youth are shown to only care about their personal lives, which usually have a positive or negative effect in every situation they are in. The youth's most evident characteristics are honesty and recklessness. An analysis of Lysander, Hermia, Helena and Demetrius' actions displays the fact that they always tell the truth, but tend to go over the line of wisdom, with an indifference to the rules. Youth is a term that refers to adolescents. Adolescents are children or teenagers who have not reached full maturity. Honesty is a quality or trait which means to be truthful, frank and sincere. Recklessness, on the other hand, involves being daring, hasty and thoughtless. To be reckless means to be unconcerned about the consequences of any action. One of the key qualities of youth is honesty because the youth in A Midsummer Night's Dream never lie, and are often straight to the point with a disregard of other people's feelings. An example of Lysander being honest occurs when he is under the flower's spell, in the woods, and bluntly tells Hermia that he is in love with Helena with an indifference to Hermia's feelings. ...read more.


Another key quality of youth in A Midsummer Night's Dream is recklessness because the youth do not think about the consequences they will later face for being daring and thoughtless. An example of recklessness is demonstrated when Lysander gives Hermia the idea of running away from Athens. He plans the idea when Theseus and Egeus refuse to let Hermia marry him. A good persuasion. Therefore, hear me, Hermia: I have a widow aunt, a dowager, Of great revenue, and she hath no child. From Athens is her house remote seven leagues; And she respects me as her only son. There, gentle Hermia, may I marry thee; And to that place the sharp Athenian law Cannot pursue us. If thou lov'st me, then, Steal forth thy father's house to-morrow night, And in the wood, a league without the town (Where I did meet thee once with Helena, To do observance to a morn of May), There will I stay for thee.4 Lysander is now displayed as a reckless character. He plans to run away with Hermia, even though it is against the Athenian law. According to Theseus and Egeus the law now states that it is illegal for Hermia and Lysander to wed. Although Lysander knows that if he breaks the law he will be hanged or jailed till he dies. Lysander, being a reckless youth, chooses to ignore the consequences he will face if he is captured. ...read more.


Helena does not stop to think if this rash decision was one of life and death. This is why recklessness is a main quality of youth in A Midsummer Night's Dream because the youth are always breaking the rules with a disregard of the consequences they will soon face. In A Midsummer Night's Dream, the youth's key qualities are honesty and recklessness. The youth are honest because they always tell the truth in every situation they are in. They are honest when they tell people they love or hate them. Whenever they are in messy situations they can easily lie about their position, but choose not to. The youth are also reckless because they always do something they know their parents will not approve of. They make plans to run away with their lover or deceive their closest friends for love's sake. The youth are always telling the truth when asked, but are always doing something daring, without thinking about the consequences they will face later. If a person does not ask them a question, they will not openly tell anyone the state of their condition, and they are often doing something behind your back, which makes the youth not trust worthy. ENDNOTES Play/ Editor 1 William Shakespeare, A Midsummer Night's Dream, Linda Buckle ed., (United Kingdom: Cambridge 1984), Act III, scene ii, lines 277b - 281. 2 Ibid., II, ii, 41 - 44. 3 Ibid., IV, i, 143 - 150. 4 Ibid., I, i, 156 - 168. 5 Ibid., II, ii, 214 - 219. 6 Ibid., I, i, 226 - 251. ...read more.

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