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The main theme in 'Romeo and Juliet' is love, and how it occurs in many forms.

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Introduction

The main theme in 'Romeo and Juliet' is love, and how it occurs in many forms. There are a number of different types of love in 'Romeo and Juliet'. Some examples of the types of love in Romeo and Juliet are Romeo's fashionable love for Rosaline, the Nurse's bawdy view of love and the Capulet's unromantic view of love. All of these types of love are in contrast to the main type of love expressed by Romeo and Juliet which is true love. We can see that at the beginning, Romeo is lovesick for a girl called Rosaline. Rosaline is a woman that we do not find much about, but before meeting Juliet. Romeo is very much infatuated by her because it was trendy in the Elizabethan Era for young men to pursue unattainable women that were usually older, wealthier, of a higher class, or that had sworn a vow of chastity. With this in mind, it was natural for Romeo to fall for a beautiful woman like Rosaline, who had sworn a vow of chastity, "She'll not be hit/ With Cupid's arrow...And in strong proof of chastity". His love for her was not returned, which resulted in Romeo becoming the typical lovesick character, which was fashionable in that era. Furthermore, we learn that Romeo's love for Rosaline is not only fashionable, but also superficial - he is only attracted to her because of her looks; "The all-seeing sun/ Ne'er saw her match since first the world begun". ...read more.

Middle

Apart from displaying true love for Romeo, we can also see that Juliet has a very practical approach to love. We can see this because when Romeo talks to her, she asks him to speak normally, not with flowery language: Do not swear at all; Or, if thou wilt, swear by thy gracious self From this we can learn that Juliet wants Romeo to stop talking in sonnets, and to stop using fancy language. This is another indication of her practical view of love as she does not want Romeo to hide his feelings behind a mask of elaborate words. Furthermore, we can see that Juliet has a practical side by the fact that she arranges a time for Romeo to send word if they are to be married; "send me word tomorrow/ By one that I'll procure to come to thee". This shows that Juliet views love with a lot of thought and thinks things through thoroughly to avoid complications. This is in contrast to Romeo, who just follows his heart without thinking about the consequences. She also shows her practical side when she realises the dangers of their relationship; "If they do see thee, they will murder thee". Juliet has realised the dangers involved when the two are from different houses. She tries to warn Romeo that the relationship will not succeed. However, their love is so strong that they are helpless to change it. Moreover, Juliet knows that it will be tough, because of the feud between the two families, and even suggests that Romeo changes his name; "Deny thy father and refuse thy name", again showing Juliet's practical side. ...read more.

Conclusion

We can also see that Capulet exerts authority over his family: Doth she not give us thanks? Is she not proud? Doth she not count her blest? From this we can not only see that Capulet feels that he has a great authority, but we can also see that he outraged by the fact someone would challenge him. Capulet displays extreme hostility, and is very ignorant to Juliet's feelings. Capulet is displaying a very cold form of love that is in extreme contrast to the type of love displayed by all of the other characters and shows that Capulet, in a sense does not really believe in love. In conclusion, in 'Romeo and Juliet', throughout the play, there is a very powerful view of love. The view of the power of love is expressed in its strongest form at the very end of the play when the two main characters, Romeo and Juliet die for each other. This shows that not only that love surpasses death, but love overcomes death. Furthermore, probably the most significant quality that love does is the fact that it ends the 'ancient' rivalry between the two families, as they must join together because of the love of Romeo and Juliet. We can also see that all of the other types of love, bawdy love, moderate love etc. are in contrast to the main type of love that is true love. EXAMINE THE DIFFERENT VIEWS OF LOVE PRESENTED IN SHAKESPEARE'S ROMEO AND JULIET 1 Taner Shakir 10L ...read more.

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