Nov 17, 2022
Conflict in Romeo and Juliet Essay: Main Themes
Romeo and Juliet is the most famous play of all time, written by William Shakespeare, that has been adapted into multiple movies, television shows, and plays. The original play was written in 16th-century England during the Elizabethan era but remains popular due to its timeless storyline.
The play revolves around Romeo Montague who falls in love with Lady Rosaline but then meets Juliet Capulet at a party that changes his life forever. They fall desperately in love without knowing that they are from feuding families, and when they find out about their family feuds, it becomes too late for them to be together. When you look at Romeo and Juliet as a whole, you see how the family feud affects every single character in this tragedy.
Love is a very powerful emotion that can make people do irrational things. For example, Romeo’s love for Juliet causes him to ignore his family’s wishes and run away from Verona with Juliet to be secretly together. However, their love is at odds with their loyalty to their families and honor, making them choose between what they want and what they should do according to society’s rules and expectations.
It leads to tragic consequences for Romeo and Juliet and those around them. Other conflicts focus on love, loyalty, and honor in terms of both families involved in this sad tale.
There are many different types of conflict in the play. The first one is between the families, which results in a feud. Another type of conflict is an emotional conflict between Romeo and Juliet, as they fall in love but aren’t allowed to be together for certain reasons. There’s also a conflict between Romeo and Mercutio, when Mercutio gets killed by Tybalt (who acts on behalf of Prince Escalus). Finally, there’s a conflict between Juliet and her parents because she doesn’t want to get married so soon after their marriage has been arranged.
The theme of ‘Romeo and Juliet’ has been explored by many other writers before and since. It is a timeless tale of love and loss, which still resonates today in popular cultures, such as William Shakespeare’s play or Baz Luhrmann’s film adaptation starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Claire Danes.
Montagues vs. Capulets
You know the story. In Verona, there lived two families: the Montagues and the Capulets. The Montagues were loyal, brave men who cared for their wives and children while they struggled to survive against their enemies. The Capulets were cruel people who would stop at nothing to get what they wanted. The two families have been feuding for years, but things come to a head when Romeo falls in love with Juliet.
But what about the historical background of this story? Shakespeare borrowed this narrative from Arthur Brooke’s poem, The Tragical History of Romeus and Juliet. Romeo and Juliet, the well-known story, was inspired by a genuine political division in 13th-century Italy. Then, two renowned Italian families — the Montagues (Italian: “Montecchi”) and the Capulets (Italian: “Capuleti”) — were engaged in a power struggle. Both houses desired to impose their dominance over the other. Therefore, they made an effort to grab the Italian king’s attention. Naturally, the person who won had better capital and social standing.
Shakespeare’s dramatic interpretation of the Montagues and Capulets contrasts their internal and external moral characteristics. The underlying divide between the families can be seen in how they speak and respect one another and their lifestyle decisions. Let’s examine the main distinctions between the Montagues and the Capulets houses.
In the drama, materialism and riches are central themes. They should be there as in the examples of two wealthy families. But Shakespeare presents a fresh approach to the subject. The Capulets have a strong emphasis on possessions. Even their girls are treated like property by them. Although Lord Montague is affluent, he never behaves extravagantly. He is aware that he has something to rely on in trying times. The House of Montagues is not prone to boasting.
To demonstrate their dominance in society, the Capulets frequently engage in feuds. In the play, the Montegues don’t start any fights. They refrain from arguing over little concerns. Montegues discourage the dueling sides from fighting in the play. Amid Romeo & Juliet’s dramatic actions, they foster a sense of calm.
Inner Thoughts and Experiences of Juliet
Juliet first appears on stage during a conversation between her father, Capulet, the patriarch of the Capulets family, and Paris, a young nobleman trying to court her. As the scene continues, it becomes clear how young Juliet is; she doesn’t even know what love is and has to ask her nurse. Her nurse’s answer seems to confuse her even more as she wonders if it might be love that she feels for Romeo.
Suppose you’re familiar with the play Romeo and Juliet. In that case, you might remember that Juliet is very anxious about whether or not Romeo will show up for their arranged meeting on the balcony. She asks many questions about what he’s doing and how much time it will take him to get there. It is a really important scene because it shows how nervous and anxious she is about meeting her new lover for the first time!
It shows us a lot about who Juliet is as a character: She’s young and inexperienced but also eager to learn more about love. Shakespeare presents this scene cleverly because it makes sense when we look back at what happened later in their relationship: Once they fall in love over time, they become less anxious around each other. After all, they know each other better than when they first met!
You see Juliet’s maturity in the way she speaks. Her language also becomes more refined as the story progresses, and by Act III, Scene V, she can talk like an adult.
In addition to developing her language, Juliet becomes more confident and independent as the story progresses. For example, when Romeo asks her if it’s true that he must leave Verona forever and never see her again, Juliet responds with: “Yes; death-bed is the only bed for me.” And then later on in this scene, when Romeo says, “Then I’ll die tomorrow,” Juliet replies with, “Live today.” You might think these are extreme examples, but they show how much Juliet has grown from scene 1, where she could not decide on her own except for refusing to marry Paris.
Tybalt and Romeo Fight
Mercutio is Romeo’s best friend. He convinces Romeo to go to a masked ball hosted by the Capulets so he can see “a fair lady.” It turns out that Mercutio knows that Tybalt, Juliet’s cousin, will be there because it was his idea for them to go and challenge him. He does this so that Romeo gets in trouble with Tybalt and his family, which then makes him be banished from Verona for ten years (this was also what happened). At the masked ball, Romeo meets Juliet, the daughter of Capulet. Tybalt’s anger with Romeo turns into a challenge to duel. Mercutio takes his place as Romeo’s champion. The two fight, but neither gains an advantage until Tybalt wounds Mercutio fatally on the ground.
Mercutio dies from his wounds. Romeo avenges Mercutio by killing Tybalt. Romeo drives a sword through Tybalt’s body as well. Romeo is banished from Verona forever, and Mercutio’s death is avenged, but it comes with a heavy price.
Difference in Opinion: Juliet and Her Father
Juliet is a girl who falls in love with Romeo as soon as she sees him. She is young and impulsive but also very mature for her age. She knows what she wants and how to get it — she doesn’t care that Romeo is a Montegue. One could argue that Juliet’s impulsiveness leads to some of the play’s most important moments (her marriage to Romeo; her suicide). Her passion for Romeo brings about these events because she refuses any other man who may come along.
Juliet represents a very romantic person: she believes in star-crossed lovers even though she knows they don’t exist for herself or for Shakespeare’s audience at the period when the play was written (the late 1500s). Although today, we know better than to expect such scenarios from real life, Juliet continues with her fantasies because they allow us as readers/viewers access into her mind where we can understand why she acts the way she does later on in life: by marrying Romeo against everyone else’s wishes; by killing herself after learning about Romeo’s death.
Juliet’s father is a very well-meaning man who only wants to do what’s best for his daughter. However, his excessive involvement in her personal life causes problems for both her parents and daughter. While he may seem like an overbearing person at times, he ultimately has good intentions toward Juliet.
Though it may seem at first glance that Lord Capulet is being too forceful with her marriage choice, his motives are well-intentioned. After all, they are the only ones who care about Juliet in this play! They only want what is best for their daughter and will do whatever it takes to ensure her happiness and safety.
The conflict between these two characters revolves around familial love and the love between two lovers. Romeo is Juliet’s love, but he’s not a good match for her because they’re from different social classes. Juliet thinks she should be able to decide who she wants to marry, but her father plans to marry her to Paris.
In contrast with their relationship, we see that relationships in William Shakespeare’s time were dictated by class and money for them to work out. If a person did not have enough money or was from a lower class than someone else, it would be difficult for them to get married because society wouldn’t allow it.
You can see that Romeo and Juliet’s marriage is not something that either family supports. Juliet’s father thinks it would be best to end all rivalry between the two families, so he is willing to postpone her wedding to Paris if she isn’t ready. However, when Juliet refuses this offer, it shows that they both want what they think is best for them: to marry each other despite their families’ wishes and escape their current situations in Verona.
Juliet also disobeyed Lord Capulet when she entered a secret relationship with Romeo at this time; however, if we consider why she did this, we notice an interesting pattern: Juliet and her mother had hidden relationships before getting married. And lastly, Juliet died to show her love towards Romeo without even thinking of her parents’ grief.
What Is the Conclusion?
The Capulet household wakes up and learns what has happened. Lord Montague and Lord Capulet are furious at the news of their children’s deaths, so they set off for Verona immediately to settle this matter.
The dueling families are distraught at the loss of their beloved children, but after a period of mourning, they find comfort in the knowledge that they will never be separated again. New Capulets and Montagues are born, who grow up as friends and cousins. The ancient grudge break as quickly as it began, but its effects are long-lasting.
As you can see, Romeo and Juliet were both committed to ending the feud between their families. Romeo’s love for Juliet is so strong that he risks his life and dies for her. Their deaths were tragic, but they brought peace between their families.
For instance, a flower contains both poison and medicine. In a similar vein, Verona is given new life by the terrible deaths of Romeo and Juliet. This ambiguity exists within the play’s role for the Friar. Despite his best efforts, he causes the lovers anguish due to his deeds. William Shakespeare’s point is that there are shades of both good and evil present in everything.
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