Essay, Research Paper: Romeo And Juliet Love

Shakespeare: Romeo and Juliet

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Throughout the tragedy of Romeo and Juliet various types of "love" are
displayed . Benvolio believes women are interchangeable, while, at the beginning
Romeo bel ieves love is pain. At the beginning Juliet does not even have a
definition of love. Paris's and Lady Capulet's definition of love is in
appearance. It is obvio us 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" lo ve 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 anot her woman. Benvolio's
definition of love shows the audience two things about Ben volio: he is a
womanizer and he has never before experienced "true love." The next
definition of love comes from Romeo, but 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." I believe Romeo is both right and wrong: not returned love
is pain, but Romeo doe s not truly love, as he is merely infatuated by a woman.
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" Shakespeare provides
the audience with 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. I agree with this definition of love (all
except that without one another the lovers cannot survive). 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 families 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 worth being in is "true love." He also
shows us that, with all types of love, there is pain. If his goal was to
influence the audience to believe that the only real love is the type of love
that existed between Romeo and Juliet, I believe he accomplished it.
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