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STUDYWORLD STUDYNOTES:

CLASSIC LITERATURE ANALYSIS

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Romeo And Juliet
An Analysis Of "Love" Throughout the tragedy of Romeo and Juliet various forms of "love" are displayed . At the beginning of the play, Benvolio believes that one woman's love is the same as another and women are interchangeable, while Romeo believes that love is pain. Juliet does not even have a definition of love and Paris's and Lady Capulet's definition of love is in appearance. It is obvious that Shakespeare wants the audience to believe that the only "true" or "real" love is the love that exists between Romeo and Juliet. The first type of love the audience is introduced to is the "interchangeable" love of Benvolio. According to Benvolio, a man should "love" a woman for only the duration of their relationship. If their relationship should end, the man should feel no grief. If the woman rejects the man initially, he should still feel no grief. In either situation, the man should simply start a relationship with another woman. Benvolio's definition of love shows the audience two things about Benvolio: he is a womanizer and he has never before experienced "true love." The next definition of love comes from Romeo, before the time he met Juliet. According to his definition, love (or, rather, not returned love) is pain. He h ides from the sun due to the "love" he feels, and does not act like "himself." The next definition of love comes from Juliet, who, before meeting Romeo, did no t even have a definition of love. She appears not to know what love is, and, for that matter, does not seem to care. She remains ignorant until she meets Romeo. Another type of "love" we are exposed to during the same scene is the love of Lady Capulet. Lady Capulet believes love comes from appearance, both physical and political, and has nothing to do with emotion. She shows this when she speaks favorably of Paris's looks and his nobility. She also shows that she does not love Capulet when she publicly denounces him. The Nurse's opinion of love coincides with that of Lady Capulet. Paris has a similar view of love. His "love" for Juliet appears to be pure, but his reason does not. He loves Juliet for her appearance and nothing else. He regards her more as property than as an individual. He is also selfish in his "love ." When he believes Juliet is dead (in Act IV) he seems sorrier for his own loss than Juliet's apparent loss. He "loves" Juliet as much as he can love anyone, but his love cannot be considered "true love" because of his selfishness. Finally, in Act II, the audience sees what is defined as "true love" in our society. This "love" is the love that grows between Romeo and Juliet. The definition of "true love" which is provided by Shakespeare, states that all the other characters' definitions of love are wrong. It also states that when two people are in true love, there is no pain unless they are permanently separated. It shows that lovers are not interchangeable, and that love transcends appearance. It proves all except one other "love" in the play wrong. It also shows that real love is not affected by distance or convenience. When two people are in "true love " they are not selfish to one another, do not care about appearances, and cannot live without one another. Romeo and Juliet's love for one another also goes beyond one other thing: names. It shows that names do not matter. In our society the difference in names would be equal to two people of different races. The people would come from racist fa milies in a modern day remake of the play. The last example of love in the play is parental love. This is shown in Act V scene iii. Lady Montague dies due to separation from her son. Capulet, Montague, Lady Capulet, and even the Nurse shows that they love either Romeo or Juliet in t his way. In the tragedy of Romeo and Juliet many types of love are shown. None of them are wrong, as the word "love" is subject to interpretation, but it is obvious that Shakespeare did not have this in mind when he wrote the play. Shakespeare shows us that the only type of love that is worthwhile, is "true love." He also shows us that, with all types of love, there is pain.

"For complete summary and analysis of literary works, please visit NovelGuide.com

 



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