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University Degree: A Midsummer Nights Dream

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  1. Symbolism of the moon in MSND

    While daytime is associated with the realism and rationality of the waking world, nighttime is associated with the irrationality and surrealism of dreams. Nighttime is a time when a time when the ghosts of dead people roam free, and when fairies "now are frolic". It is precisely in this kind of supernatural atmosphere that the main action of the play takes place, within the moonlit forests that lie outside of the rational daylight world of Athens. Puck's speech also refers to the moon as the "triple Hecate", an association that has a resonance throughout the play.

    • Word count: 2015
  2. The idea of being 'a lover' in Shakespearean drama has its own conventions. Discuss with regard to 'A Midsummer Night's Dream' and 'Richard III'.

    Richard originally wants Queen Elizabeth to tell the Princess he "did all this for love of her" (Shakespeare, Richard III, 4. 4. 273.1). The way that Richard goes about playing the part of the lover in this conversation is completely in character. Richard is the "manipulative protagonist" (Sparknotes, 2) of the play, as well as being its major villain. He has an open allegiance with evil, and is "determined to prove a villain" (R III, 1. 1. 30). Richard does not play the part of the lover in a sincere way, but it is still convincing, in a sense, due to his charismatic nature.

    • Word count: 1655
  3. Explore the significance of transformation and discuss its significance as a theme in the play

    Having beaten her in battle, Theseus has fallen deeply in love with Hipployta, and the feeling is reciprocated. The play begins with them in the midst of conversing about their feelings regarding the forthcoming wedding. The fact that Theseus fought Hippolyta and now, without explanation he loves her introduces the idea that love is an irrational force and can quickly change one's attitudes. It also foreshadows the movement of the story from antagonism to harmony. Egeus, whose intervention introduces the plot of the young lovers, is a typical figure of comedy. He is the angry father who obstructs the course of true love and it is his entrance that changes the relaxed and calm atmosphere into one that is tension filled.

    • Word count: 1929
  4. Midsummer Night's Dream

    This man has bewitched the bosom of my child: Thou, thou Lysander, thou hast given her rhymes, And interchanged love-tokens with my child: (Act 1, Scene 1) People in Athens believed in charms and other paranormal things. Egeus complains about the influence of Lysander on his child. He suggests that the 'interchanged love-tokens' between his daughter and Lysander are brittle, since he bewitched her with his rhymes and physical appearance by the moonlight. Egeus is aware that the love is influenced by the moon rather than normal feelings.

    • Word count: 2356
  5. Midsummers Night Dream Wssay

    crawling all over her, complaining " methought a serpent eat my heart away". This proves her distress at the loss of her other half, Lysander. To show that we are involved in the secret twists of the plot, Hermia awakes and speaks of her confusion to Lysanders whereabouts. "Speak, of all love! / I swoon almost with fear" This quote shows how frightened she is and how she can not understand why he has left her. However, the audience is let in on the secret here, because we know exactly where Lysander is and we also know why.

    • Word count: 2667
  6. What qualities would you look for in casting the actors playing Helena and Hermia and how would you direct the opening scene of the play to convey their differences to an audience? A Midsummer Night's Dream

    Helena on the other hand has to be quite devious, not what a loyal best friend should be like. She has to be obsessive and lovesick. She also has to be taller than Hermia for there to be comedy, as it is quite ironic how a smaller person can undermine a tall person and also usually if someone admires another person they look up to them not down at them. Hermia also should be olive skinned so that it is ironic when Helena describes her as 'fair'.

    • Word count: 2672
  7. A Midsummer Night's Dream dramatises the power of the imagination to shape and to dissolve identity; this power is a source of

    Oberon is the main character in this play, mainly because he is the reason for most of the magical things happening. He orders Puck to go out and collect the flower that is used to perform the spell "Fetch me this herb; and be thou here again ere the leviathan can swim a league" and then tells him to look for the people to put the spell on "You shalt know the man by the Athenian garments he hath on".

    • Word count: 2375
  8. A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

    By beginning this scene I would show Oberon in the woods, looking forward to the effects of the love juice, I would make a close up view on his glowing face for a few seconds which would show him as being quite excited. I would dress Oberon in white robes and he would have glowing skin, which would be a typical description of a fairy. The Elizabethan audience would also relate to this because they wouldn't understand the other kinds of fairies we see in other plays and films these days, they would most likely have preferred it basic and simplistic.

    • Word count: 1541
  9. Tension in Drama.

    There must be reasons. * Make the task fun. Human Relationships are a central component to the dramatic tension. Thus one of the common sources of tension can be found in the relationships found in the characters. Misunderstanding Dramatic tension often arises from misunderstandings and the consequences that follow. Misunderstandings can be accidental or deliberate. The resolution of the misunderstanding and its result in confusion can be either funny (comedy) or disastrous (tragedy). Intimacy Sometimes when people confide in you, you often feel a degree of tension when you bear this secret.

    • Word count: 856
  10. In what ways is 'A Midsummer Night's Dream' a play of discord and disorder?

    At the start of the play Egeus explains "Full of vexation come I with complaint" (1.1) he is referring to Hermia's decision not marry Demetrius, the man chosen to be her husband. This has deeply angered Egeus especially as Hermia has announced her plans to marry Lysander who he feels is an intolerable suitor. Egeus whilst explaining the problem to Theseus, the duke of Athens, even exclaims, "As she is mine, I may dispose of her; which shall be to this gentleman or to her death." (1.1) His willingness to put his daughter to death highlights the intense discord in there relationship.

    • Word count: 1877
  11. In Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream there are many instances of betrayal.Betrayal plays a big role in this play.

    Therefore, the characters who do the action are not aware and can not act intentionally. They are only puppets acting out in order to make the audience laugh or help mortals out. In this paper, I will not discuss betrayal under magic because the characters can not be held responsible for their own actions. I have chosen to discuss three examples of intentional betrayal because they serve a central role in the play. These betrayals change the course of the play, create movement and action, and they have different motivations. Two of the betrayals are carried out directly b the person who is affected by the situation.

    • Word count: 987
  12. A Midsummer Night's Dream It's awfully high up here on the gallery. I do hope I'll be able to hear the play still. I got here extra early so I'd get a good seat, as

    "Hippolyta, I woo'd thee with my sword, and won thy love, doing three injuries; But I will wed thee in another key" says Theseus. Oh, look how much he loves her, how adoring, I believe she wants to marry him, I hope they do, they make such a lovely couple. I wonder what will happen next now that more actors have come on stage. "Lady Charlotte" shouts someone behind me. I turn around to be faced by my dear friend "Lady Victoria" and her fianc´┐Ż Sir William.

    • Word count: 1656
  13. "The course of true love never did run smooth." Discuss how Act 1 scene 1 of 'A Midsummer Night's Dream' mirrors this comment of Lysanders';

    However, underlying the glossy visage of these two lovers, we can see that their love had not always been whole, as Theseus tells us of their past, "Hippolyta, I wooed thee with my sword, and won thy love doing thee injuries;" This shows that their course of true love did not always run smooth, as they had previously been at war with one another, and Theseus had defeated Hippolyta, Queen of the Amazons, in battle. Theseus then goes on to tell how their situation has changed, as their former hatred has turned into love and they have fallen for each other, saying "But I will wed thee in another key, with pomp, with triumph, and with revelling."

    • Word count: 2025
  14. Racter Analysis of Hermia and Helena

    with her height. She says "Her height, forsooth, she hath prevailed him. And are you grown so high in his esteem Because I am so dwarfish and so low?" Act Three, Scene 2, Lines 296 to 298. * Hermia has a fiery temper. Helena had remarked "O, when she's angry, she is keen and shrewd. She was a vixen when she went to school; And though she be but little she is fierce." Act Three, Scene 2, Lines 328 to 330.

    • Word count: 753
  15. As a director, how would you want your audience to respond to the opening scene of 'A Midsummer Night's Dream', and how would you direct the scene in order to achieve your aim?

    I would also like to include a fanfare whenever somebody important entered of left the stage, as this would show that Theseus is a Duke, and more than a simply wealthy man. I would want Theseus to appear wise, knowledgeable, just and fair. In order to highlight his fairness, I would have the actor emphasise the choice he leaves with Hermia, instead of enforcing his word onto her, he leaves Hermia with her own decision, and therefore, her own consequences.

    • Word count: 1045
  16. Weak or Strong? How does Shakespeare portray his female characters in "A Mid-Summer Nights Dream"

    Titania had a high social position as queen, also commanding the fairies. With the aid of her fairies e.g. "fairies be gone", she has quite a powerful force. This alone is not all of Titania's strengths, during the play she is persistently asked by Oberon for the possession of her young Indian boy but strongly refuses, "I will not part with him". This strength of Titania, denying Oberon of the Indian boy, shows her power over him. This also shows the strength of her loyalty to her friend, mother of the Indian boy, to keep her promise of looking after the boy.

    • Word count: 938
  17. How would you perform the role of Titania in Act 2, scene 1 and Act 4 scene 1 to highlight her contrasting attitudes and behaviour towards Oberon and Bottom?

    In this entrance Titania would come on first, confidently, striding with an air of competitiveness and determinedness. She would then take centre stage with her menagerie of fairies. The initial look of confidence would morph into annoyance, and perhaps a small crease of hurt as Oberon has not shown, and as if this was an intentional but yet unspoken meeting between her and Oberon. Oberon and his fairies would then be split up around the edge of the stage then tiptoe and creep up and begin his line 'I'll meet by moonlight ,proud Titania' in a large booming voice to shock and startle Titania.

    • Word count: 1524
  18. A Midsummer Night's Dream by Shakespeare - Summary of Theme and Narrative

    Next, are the fairies; the fairies embody the force of nature. The effect of this personification is to make the cosmos seem a place, which, though it may be unpredictable and dangerous, is ultimately friendly to the humans, and finally the Athenian craftsmen. The play-within-a play that makes up most of act 5 scene1 it is used to represent, many of the important ideas and themes of the main plot. There are four interwoven plots. The wedding of Theseus and Hippolyta, the tangled love affairs between Hermia, Lysander, Demetrius and Helena, the quarrel between Oberon and Titania (which gives rise to the fairies' plot), and finally the workmen's planning, rehearsal and performance of the play 'Pyramus and Thisbe'.

    • Word count: 2073
  19. Discuss the ways in which Shakespeare Gains & retains the audiences In act I scene I of "A Midsummer nights Dream".

    The fact that the plots are all linked together retains the audience's attention as if they stop listening for one second they will lose the plot of everything, they would want to know what will happen. The wedding interacts with the lovers because that is when Hermia has to give her decision to Theseus if she will marry Demetrius or go to a nunnery or die.

    • Word count: 3727
  20. Discuss the similarities and differences in the presentation of Theseus and Oberon in Midsummer Nights Dream.

    We are first introduced to him when he is acting as an adjudicator between Hermia and her father in the matter of her marriage do Dimetrius.(she is in love with Lysander, and wants to marry him against her fathers expressed wishes) In act 1 scene 1 line 117 to 120 we see a good example of Theseus' firm expression mixed with some compassion. "For you, fair Hermia, look you arm yourself to fit your fancies to your fathers will, Or else the law of Athens yields you up- Which by no means we may extenuate- To death, or to a vow of single life".

    • Word count: 976
  21. Compare how Act 3 Scene 2 was presented in the two versions of "A Midsummer Night's Dream" that you watched.

    Then both men leave the scene bracing for a fight, and Helena is chased away by Hermia. There are two versions of this scene, the black and white version directed by Max Reindhart in 1935, and a colour version directed by Adrian Noble in 1995, which was originally a stage version made by a Royal Shakespeare Company. In the Max Reindhart version, they wear Elizabethan clothes and speak with upper class accents. It is more traditional then the 1995 version, because in 1995, people would probably have wanted it to be more traditional. They are in a forest, which is as described in the play, with lots of animal sounds being made to create an atmosphere which makes it feel more like a forest.

    • Word count: 2430
  22. The Response Phase for Romeo and Juliet.

    Tableau To show the theme of we used ten people for this strategy of mixed gender. The tableau consisted of five people standing in a row on a chair; this was to symbolise their roles as the oppressors as they were socially higher than the other five who were standing on the floor with their heads down, these were all diagonal with one another to form a triangular shape so that none of the characters were blocked from view. We used a series of three freeze frames to show the change of theme from oppression, to equality and then finally freedom.

    • Word count: 1295
  23. What is the dramatic role of the four young lovers in the play "A Midsummer Nights Dream" and what advice would you as a director give to your actors on the playing of these parts?

    However, Hermia does not want this as she is in love with Lysander. If I was directing Hermia I would tell her to stand proud as I would want to show that she knows what she wants. As Hermia, she would know that she wants to be with Lysander, not Demitrius. However she would appear shocked when her father says that unless she was to marry Demitrius she will either be killed or have to leave society for a nunnery. When Hermia speaks to Egeus she would look him in the eyes. When Hermia is with Lysander in scene one, I would direct her to come across as love struck, clinging onto Lysander.

    • Word count: 712
  24. Explore the theme of Appearance and Reality in A Midsummer Night's Dream

    Egeus uses words like 'stolen' to show how he feels about Hermia loving Lysander. Egeus' speech introduces the idea the idea that people's feelings can be influenced by magic, poetry and moonlight so that they cannot tell the difference between appearance and reality. 'Thou hast by moonlight at her window sung, With feigning voice verses of feigning love.' The word 'feigning' suggests that the love is false. Helena's soliloquy is significant as it tells us what is to come with Titania and Bottom.

    • Word count: 1877
  25. Comparing and contrasting The characters of Helena and Hermia - A Midsummer Night's Dream.

    Puck, watching this silly scene, catches Bottom alone and puts an a***s head on him. Bottom then comes across Titania, and succeeds in waking her up. Lysander and Demetrius prepare to fight one another for Helena. Oberon finds Titania and releases her from the spell. He also releases Lysander. Oberon and Titania briefly bless the couples and their future children. Helena is a tall woman but thinks very low of herself and her appearance. It is clear to us that Helena is tall because when she is arguing with Hermia, she is called a "painted maypole."

    • Word count: 1460

Conclusion analysis

Good conclusions usually refer back to the question or title and address it directly - for example by using key words from the title.
How well do you think these conclusions address the title or question? Answering these questions should help you find out.

  1. Do they use key words from the title or question?
  2. Do they answer the question directly?
  3. Can you work out the question or title just by reading the conclusion?
  • "The course of true love never did run smooth." Discuss how Act 1 scene 1 of 'A Midsummer Night's Dream' mirrors this comment of Lysanders';

    "Throughout the play, and importantly the specific quotes and happenings of Act 1 Scene 1, we are continuously suggested that a tragic ending is to come, which captures the hearts of the audience and uses the audience's emotions to bring a sense of sympathy and compassion to the twisting storyline. The play conclusively ends with the marriage of Theseus and Hippolyta, along with the marriage of Lysander and Hermia, and Helena and Demetrius, and with Oberon and Titania overcoming their ongoing conflicts. However, whether it is true to call the love between Demetrius and Helena 'true' may perhaps be the continuous symbol that is, love can run smoothly, but true love with no outside influences, is destined to be a long, confusing journey, that never did run smoothly."

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