About this sample
About this sample
Words: 826 |
5 min read
Published: Feb 8, 2022
Words: 826|Pages: 2|5 min read
William Shakespeare has unquestionably changed my personal understanding and appreciation of the value of drama as his works has given me the ability to interpret the representations of humanity. As a teenager myself, I believe that the value of Shakespeare's works is highly relevant for teens as it communicates important themes, and reveals characters which we may encounter in our lives, such as Romeo - A persistent romancer; Hamlet - Indecisive Overthinker; Iago - manipulative friend.
I believe drama is unique for its use of dramatic elements to convey the significance of humanity to the audience. Thus, Shakespeare received much of his success by using these elements to reveal the unobtrusive issues faced in humanity.
Shakespeare uses soliloquies to allow the audience to gain an insight on what is happening inside the mind of the character. For instance, in the tragedy ‘Romeo and Juliet’, Shakespeare communicates Romeo's admiration for Juliet to the audience through the soliloquy, ‘It is the east, and Juliet is the sun’. Shakespeare manifests Romeo’s distress and pain for his denial over Juliet's love through the symbolism of his scars, 'He jests at scars that never felt a wound.'.
Modern day audiences are given the opportunity to experience similar events in ‘Julius Caesar’ relating to betrayal, comparable to scenarios such as revealing secrets or gossiping about a friend. Cassius is the archetypal character who is the jealous, backstabbing friend whom you’d find in these modern day scenarios.
Shakespeare reveals betrayal in ‘Julius Caesar’ through the use of symbolism, ‘And therefore think him as a serpent's egg Which, hatch'd, would, as his kind, grow mischievous, And kill him in the shell.’ Brutus refers to Caesar as a serpent's egg as he hasn’t yet taken power. He identifies Caesar as a threat and is worried that when the “egg is hatched”, Caesar will be fed with glory. Betrayal is therefore shown in Brutus’ final decision, to kill Caesar.
The line ‘Et tu, Bruté?’, reveals betrayal between Caesar and Brutus. Caesar’s exclamation communicates to the audience that he considered Brutus as a friend. Caesar’s death is cathartic for Brutus because he has achieved the ultimate betrayal and he faces no competition.
Conflict is relevant and universal to modern audiences as it represents the current issues faced in our society. Modern audiences are able to relate to the tragedy and history play ‘Julius Caesar’ through political disagreements and conflict between countries which result in wars.
Shakespeare introduces an archetypal character in ‘Julius Caesar’, the loyal friend, Mark Antony. He portrays the characteristics of a friend who’d be by your side in modern scenarios. Antony repeats the phrase ‘And Brutus is an honourable man’ four times throughout his speech. Shakespeare has purposefully included repetition to reveal Antony’s disagreement of Brutus as an honourable man. This then persuades the people of Rome that Brutus isn’t honourable, causing conflict between the citizens of Rome, and Brutus.
Brutus creates conflict between Caesar and the Roman public by revealing the thought that if Caesar obtained the crown, he would've taken advantage of the Romans despite those who helped him achieve success. Brutus uses a metaphor to show the comparison between the board game ‘Snakes and Ladders’ and Caesar’s growth in power, ascend from your successes but descend from your mistakes - ‘That lowliness is young ambition's ladder, Whereto the climber-upward turns his face; But when he once attains the upmost round. He then unto the ladder turns his back, Looks in the clouds, scorning the base degrees By which he did ascend.’
Complexity of love is relevant and universal for modern audiences as it is a controversial topic which affects majority of humanity. ‘A Midsummers Night’s Dream’ highlights the challenges of finding love or the issues faced with a relationship.
Shakespeare reveals complexity of love in ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ through symbolism. Shakespeare uses a love potion as a symbol for the desperation for affection and how it may be forced upon someone unwillingly. Shakespeare highlights this through the line “reason and love keep little company together nowadays”. In this line, Bottom, the “mischievous companion”, directly states that love may result in an unrequited relationship in current society, causing rejection to an admirer.
In ‘Julius Caesar’, Shakespeare uses Brutus as the tragic hero who states his hamartia in his speech to the Roman public, ‘I have the same dagger for myself, when it shall please my country to need my death’. Brutus reveals this by using Pathos to tell the audience that he will sacrifice his life for the love of his country. His patriotism for Rome reveals complexity of love as it draws attention to Brutus’ willingness to protect Rome, despite the possibility of not receiving the same love in return. This foreshadows modern-day events such as forbidden love in particular religions or a persistent lover after the end of a relationship.
To conclude, Shakespeare’s work has definitely left an enduring relevance on my understanding and appreciation of drama through the genius ways he uses dramatic elements to convey the meaning of humanity.
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