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Romeo and Juliet In this essay, I will be looking in detail and analysing Act 3 Scene 5 of William Shakespeare's Romeo

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Introduction

Romeo and Juliet In this essay, I will be looking in detail and analysing Act 3 Scene 5 of William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet. I will be looking at the behavior and attitudes of the characters in the scene, and then discuss how I would relate to these features if I were to direct this play. As director I must decide to direct the play in a way that shows the reason for the system and the problems that it creates, which I think Shakespeare was trying to illustrate. Romeo and Juliet is a story set in Verona, Italy. It is based on two young people experiencing courtly love, as their social status disallows them to be together. This unobtainable love is due to the constant feud between the Capulet's and the Montague's, which then becomes the reason for the deaths of these 'star-crossed lovers'. In the fifteenth century parents were in favor of arranged marriages. The attitude was that parents should have complete control over their daughter's choice of marriage partner, if the father does not approve of the man that his daughter loves, and then she is not allowed to marry him. When the father chooses a husband for his daughter, she has no say over whether she marries him or not. In this play, the reaction of Juliet towards the arranged marriage would have come as a shock to Shakespearian audiences, as they would find it hard to understand why she is disobeying her father, but to a modern audience this would be seen as an acceptable reaction as she is sticking up for herself. The father would always choose a groom who had a high social status, with money and power. ...read more.

Middle

Juliet would have tears running down her face, as she begs on her knees to Lord Capulet. Now Juliet has been rejected by both of her parents, she turns to her nurse for comfort. However the nurse must respect Lord Capulet's decision and this disappoints Juliet as she was hoping the nurse would be on her side. The nurse will not go against her masters for fear of a punishment, but she begs to give her opinion on the matter, even though Lord Capulet has told her to shut up, "May not one speak?" When the nurse speaks to defend Juliet she is told to hold her tongue. Whilst saying this, Lord Capulet pulls his face quickly towards the nurse in a threatening manner to remind everyone to treat him with the respect that he feels he deserves. Next I will explain how I think Act 3 Scene 5 should be directed on stage. I will comment on parts that I would take out or include in the scene and a reason for doing so. I will also comment on stage directions and how different parts will be acted out. I think the scene should begin just before Nurse knocks on the door of Juliet's bedroom, in which Romeo and Juliet lay staring into each others eyes. The young couple have been jokingly disagreeing on whether it is dawn or not, but in this they are actually revealing premonitions of death. 'I must be gone and live, or stay and die' this is one of Romeo's last lines to Juliet as he realises his situation. This line has an underlying truth because of the reference to death which actually happens later in the play. ...read more.

Conclusion

In this scene the author surprises us by revealing a completely different side to the main characters. He does this by showing us their true emotions; whether it is anger, love or desperation. The character of Lord Capulet is shown to be a man of great anger. All through the play he is portrayed as a loving father until in this particular scene when he is shown as menacing and controlling. He also appears to be very unsympathetic to his daughter's wishes. Lady Capulet is shown in a similar way. She is a kind, caring woman throughout but again, changes in this scene. I also believe that Lord and Lady Capulet may feel that they are doing right by Juliet, and that it is Juliet who is in the wrong over the arranged marriage. Juliet in this particular scene is shown as quite insecure and very fragile as her emotions become quiet clear both towards her parents and her husband, Romeo. The reason I have chosen to portray this scene in the way I have is because I think it is necessary to show all the characters emotions as clearly as possible. My reasoning for the use of body language, mainly by Lord Capulet, was to add impact and to emphasise different feelings in the argument between him and his daughter, Juliet. Another part in the scene that has particular interest is nearer the end of the scene when Juliet realises that she does not have many options left about her proposed marriage to Paris, she then tries to seek help from her husband Romeo. However he cannot help her as he has been banished. Juliet then goes to Friar Lawrence for help "I'll to the friar, to know his remedy, if all else fail, myself have power to die". This bold statement then tragically becomes reality. ...read more.

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