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The play 'Romeo and Juliet' deals with love and hate; two very contrasting emotions.

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Introduction

The play 'Romeo and Juliet' deals with love and hate; two very contrasting emotions. Romeo states early on in the play, "...here's much to do with hate but more with love...". The play also contains many other conflicting ideas; for example between characters, language, settings and scenes. Shakespeare uses these opposing elements so the audience does not lose interest when watching the play, and to create a carefully structured unit. One of the first contrasting elements in the play is that between differing types of love. In the beginning of the play, Romeo declares his unrequited love for Rosaline. It is an infatuation rather than love. He cannot possibly have loved Rosaline, as she was soon forgotten when Romeo met Juliet. The Friar accused Romeo of 'doting not loving'. In contrast to the infatuation Romeo had for Rosaline, there is the faultless love that Romeo and Juliet shared. There love together is seen as being perfect, whereby each is prepared to die for the other: 'haply some poison yet doth hang on them, to make me die with a restorative'. Different types of love are also evident in the play. Maternal love is shown by the nurse to Juliet, "QUOTATION". The nurse has taken Juliet on as her own child and loves her dearly. ...read more.

Middle

The Lord and Lady from both houses are similar, as also are Romeo and Juliet. In my opinion Shakespeare adds these similarities to make the audience contemplate what it would be like if the two families were in harmony together: they could be good friends as they are alike in many ways. Romeo and Juliet are the two main characters throughout the play; to keep them interesting Shakespeare forms contrasts between themselves. The first moment Juliet is introduced to the audience is in Act 1 scene 3. she is presented as a young girl, when her mother and the nurse speak continuously of her age being 13 years. Her mother, Lady Capulet is speaking to Juliet about marriage. Juliet responds with "...it is an honour which I dream not of...". This shows that she tries to please her mother, that she is very naive and further more how child-like she can be, as she converses in one syllable words, with the exception of 'honour'. In Act 1 scene 1 we meet Romeo who is in mourning due to his unrequited love for Rosaline. In contrast with many plays, Romeo, as the 'hero', is not heroic or brave, but shy, withdrawn and confused. Shakespeare refuses to style his plays as stereotypical, by showing Romeo being different to normal lead characters. ...read more.

Conclusion

Day is often assumed to be happy, and night the time for evil. In 'Romeo and Juliet' this is the portrayed oppositely. All the happy scenes take place at night, for example; Old Capulet's Dance and the Balcony scene. The unhappy scenes such as the death of Mecutio and Tybalt, the banishment of Romeo, and the funeral of Romeo and Juliet, all happen during the day. The contrasts between night and day, and black and white, are used frequently in the dialogue of the play to describe things. Romeo describes Juliet's beauty flooding the darkness of the tomb with "...her beauty makes this vault a feasting presence of light...". When Romeo first sees Juliet he describes her as "...a rich jewel upon an Ethiop's ear...". This emphasis the difference between black, the Eithiop's ear, and the white of the jewel. Another example of this contrast between black and white in creating effect is "...so shows a snowy dove trooping with crows...". In conclusion there are a lot of contradictions in Shakespeare's play; 'Romeo and Juliet'. All of these contrasts are necessary to ensure the full captivation of the audience and their entertainment. The differences between Romeo and Juliet are needed to portray that their love together changed them as people as an indication of how strong their love was. Shakespeare did not follow a stereotypical play format but contradicted the view thus leaving the audience with personal thoughts and feelings. ...read more.

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