Themes Of Violence And Conflict Are Central To Romeo And Juliet By Shakespeare

1519 words - 6 pages

Romeo and Juliet is a play written by William Shakespeare who was born in 1564 and died in 1616, during his time he wrote many plays which were prolific including Macbeth, Othello and The Tempest.

Theatre in Elizabethan times was marvellous entertainment. Plays would be performed almost anywhere, the theatres were new and extremely popular places for people to meet up socialise. All sorts of people went to watch plays, from the poorest people to the richest. The poor people would stand at the front while the richest would sit down and watch from a more comfortable place. During 1592-93, Shakespeare wrote long poems instead of plays as the theatres were closed due to the plague. The people in this time were very religious and wouldn?t have allowed love stories or anything other than violence and conflict, this is why Romeo and Juliet is superseded with much violence and conflict which covers the love story in Romeo and Juliet.

In Romeo and Juliet violence and conflict are very important as a result of the fact that two families in this play dislike each other and are feuding. This causes much friction in the play leading to a huge amount of violence and conflict.

A prologue is an introduction or foreword which is used to prepare the audience for the violence and conflict in the play. This is done when it states: ?Where civil blood makes civil hands unclean? this informs the audience that a high class family?s blood is spilt by another high class citizen. Another part of the prologue states: ?A pair of star-crossed lovers take their life, ?Doth with their death bury their parents? strife.? This explains to the audience that two lovers kill themselves and when they die they end their parent?s trouble.

Throughout Act 1, Scene 1 violence and conflict occur a number of times. At the beginning Sampson and Gregory are walking the streets searching for trouble, Gregory instigates a conflict with Sampson by telling him that he?s more likely to run away then to fight: ?To move is to stir, and to be valiant is to stand. Therefore if thou art moved, thou runn?st away.? Sampson then replies: ?A dog of that house shall move me to stand. I will take the wall of any man or maid of Montague?s? this means that he will take on any Montague, male or female. Later, they meet some servants from the house of Montague and begin to taunt them: ?Nay, as they dare. I will bite my thumb at them, which is a disgrace to them if they bear it.? This means he insulted them. Then they start a fight, beginning the violence. A Montague called Benvolio arrives and tries to stop the violence: ?Part fools. Put up your swords, you know not what you do? but then Tybalt, a Capulet, attacks him. Citizens of Verona, the place in which the play takes place, then come and try to stop the battle however the leader of the house of Capulet comes and tries to join in but he is restrained by his wife: ?A crutch, a crutch! Why call you for a sword?? by this she means that rather than...

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