Romeo and juliet role of fate essay

Yet when the pressures of society begin to weigh down upon them, Romeo and Juliet succumb and attempt to fit back into their traditional gender roles. Romeo accuses Juliet of making him soft and losing his manhood: “O sweet Juliet. / Thy beauty hath made me effeminate, / And in my temper soft’ned valor’s steel!” (-115). He involves himself in a fight to the death in order to defend his murdered friend Mercutio as well as his honor as a man, which leads to his banishment and the tragic turn of the play. In succumbing to his male self, he increases in his rash judgments and behavior, causing him to seek out a way to kill himself and others in his way to be with Juliet without realizing she was not yet dead. Juliet, in becoming submissive to Friar Lawrence’s plan and taking a potion that would make her seem dead in order to avoid the conflict of the marriage dispute between her parents, reverts back to a feminine role and surrenders to what others decide for her. In putting her trust and fate in someone’s hand other than herself, she creates an opening for disaster. In surrendering to the standard gender roles, the couple falls into an inescapable tragedy.

In his 1562 narrative poem The Tragical History of Romeus and Juliet , Arthur Brooke translated Boaistuau faithfully but adjusted it to reflect parts of Chaucer's Troilus and Criseyde . [19] There was a trend among writers and playwrights to publish works based on Italian novelles —Italian tales were very popular among theatre-goers—and Shakespeare may well have been familiar with William Painter 's 1567 collection of Italian tales titled Palace of Pleasure . [20] This collection included a version in prose of the Romeo and Juliet story named "The goodly History of the true and constant love of Romeo and Juliett" . Shakespeare took advantage of this popularity: The Merchant of Venice , Much Ado About Nothing , All's Well That Ends Well , Measure for Measure , and Romeo and Juliet are all from Italian novelle . Romeo and Juliet is a dramatisation of Brooke's translation, and Shakespeare follows the poem closely but adds extra detail to both major and minor characters (in particular the Nurse and Mercutio). [21] [22] [23]

It speaks to the brilliance of Shakespeare that when we reimagine his plays in strange new places, they work all the better — and it speaks to the perfection of Robert Wise and Jerome Robbins’ West Side Story that it beat out all these lush Renaissance retellings for the top spot among Romeo and Juliet movies. Fair Verona becomes Manhattan in the 1950s, where rival gangs the Jets and the Sharks are embroiled in a bitter turf war, and former Jet Tony (Richard Beymer) romances the Sharks’ leader’s sister Maria (Natalie Wood) from the bottom of a fire escape. While nobody speaks a word of Shakespeare, the movie’s got the next best thing in Stephen Sondheim, who got one of his first major gigs writing the lyrics to Leonard Bernstein’s songs, and while the young lovers are both sufficiently charming, it’s George Chakiris’ Bernardo (the Tybalt character) and Rita Moreno’s Anita (the Nurse) who steal the show in Oscar-winning performances buoyed by some killer dancing. West Side Story may not be written in iambic pentameter, but its passion and sincerity get to the heart of Romeo and Juliet better than anything else.  

The belief in fate, fortune and the power of the stars were part of the Elizabethan World View. The “chain of being” states the position of humans in a kind of hierarchy, which should not be altered, because it would cause the destruction of the world order. The highest human beings are kings and queens and the lowest is the servant [1] . Likewise people believed, that Fortuna was responsible for the position of men in society. She is depicted as a blindfolded woman, who turned the “wheel of fortune” at whim. There are virtuous persons without sins on top and unvirtuous are on the bottom. But men are able to influence their position by their actions, if they are good they can move up, if not they move down [2] . Therefore the belief in fate was very common and astrology was very important. It was also an accepted science in the noble courts in Shakespeare’s time. Fate influenced the lives of the people, they relied on the stars and believed in their fateful power, the stars were never wrong [3] .

Romeo and juliet role of fate essay

romeo and juliet role of fate essay

The belief in fate, fortune and the power of the stars were part of the Elizabethan World View. The “chain of being” states the position of humans in a kind of hierarchy, which should not be altered, because it would cause the destruction of the world order. The highest human beings are kings and queens and the lowest is the servant [1] . Likewise people believed, that Fortuna was responsible for the position of men in society. She is depicted as a blindfolded woman, who turned the “wheel of fortune” at whim. There are virtuous persons without sins on top and unvirtuous are on the bottom. But men are able to influence their position by their actions, if they are good they can move up, if not they move down [2] . Therefore the belief in fate was very common and astrology was very important. It was also an accepted science in the noble courts in Shakespeare’s time. Fate influenced the lives of the people, they relied on the stars and believed in their fateful power, the stars were never wrong [3] .

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