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What is the dramatic effectiveness of Act 3 Scene 5 in Shakespeare's 'Romeo and Juliet'?

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Introduction

What is the dramatic effectiveness of Act 3 Scene 5 in Shakespeare's 'Romeo and Juliet'? William Shakespeare's 'Romeo and Juliet' is a fictional play written in the region of 1594-1596. It was an adaptation of the Arthur Brookes poem, 'The tragical history of Romeus and Juliet' which was published in 1562. The Elizabethan audience had different expectations. They were happy to go to see a story that had been changed a little and to see Shakespeare's interpretation of it. Many people went to see the play because 'Romeo and Juliet' was wrote around two historical families, the Montague's and the Capulet's. Nevertheless, the storyline is fictional. Shakespeare also added in a few additional characters such as the Nurse, Mercutio, and Friar Lawrence. The language used in Elizabethan times is very different to that of today's society and Shakespeare often writes using blank verse or iambi pentameter. Act 3 Scene 5 in a very dramatic scene when performed on stage or in a film. The start of the scene is slow and gains momentum as it goes on. The scene starts with frequent entrances of different characters, the constant changes of mood, the extremes of emotions expressed and the dramatic irony present all contribute to the dramatic effectiveness of this central scene. ...read more.

Middle

As Lady Capulet refers to her "joyful news" and ironically also Juliet's first reaction is a pleasing one, "And joy comes well in such a needy time." The announcement is made highly dramatic by delaying the crucial words "Shall happily make thee there a joyful bride" The intensity of Juliet's angry reaction would be the cause of great drama on the stage and when being performed as it is the first confrontation Juliet has had with her family, "Now by Saint Peter's church and Peter too He shall not make me there joyful bride!" She is extremely indignant, "Here are news indeed!" And very determined, "I will not marry yet..." The audience of course knows of her situation and this would make them feel highly sympathetic to Juliet. Lord Capulet arrives on the scene he makes it become one of the most dramatic parts of the whole scene as it is the most violent and furious. A number of factors make it dramatically effective: He arrives in a frightening and threatening mood and Lady Capulet's fear warns us of whet to expect, "Here comes your father. Tell him yourself And see how he will take it at your hands." In other words see how he will have a bad reaction to this news. ...read more.

Conclusion

"Ancient damnation! O most wicked fiend!" She is evil to suggest that and this extreme language is very vivid. Juliet's romanticism contrasts effectively with the Nurse's critical and practical advice. Juliet seems to mature at the end of this scene and this makes for very effective drama. She acts with detachment from the Nurse, who has shattered her illusions, "Well thou hast comforted me marvellous much" She says this with sarcasm and although we feel great pity for her in her isolation we also admire her for her courage and dignity, "..........Go, counsellor! Thou and my bosom henceforth shall be twain." Meaning, you've give me advice but from now on my heart and your advice will be apart. In conclusion in this highly dramatic scene we see Juliet abandoned by those who claim to love her and who she is suppose to be able to turn to for help and advice and look to for support, love and wisdom. The major contrast in this scene full of contrasts is between Youth and Age. Sadly Age does not emerge at all well from the episode, showing itself unreasonable, proud, unloving, unnatural and cynical. Youth on the other hand shows itself spontaneous but loving, loyal and principled. Juliet refuses to deny her real love for Romeo. Therefore the dramatic effectiveness of the scene shows the constant changes in mood and extreme emotions. Words-2,254 ...read more.

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