Romantic Relationships In A Midsummer Night's Dream

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Maybe More than a Skill A Midsummer Night’s Dream, written by William Shakespeare, is a tale of when trickery interferes with love, causing lots of twist and turns in the romantic relationships of the characters Hermia, Lysander, Demetrius, and Helena. Within the first 100 lines, preliminary stressors are revealed. Hermia’s father, Egeus, has spoken his complaints to King Oberon about his trepidation regarding the love triangle Hermia has put herself into with Lysander, her lover, and Demetrius, Egeus’ choice. Even though Demetrius is aware of the love Lysander and Hermia have, this does not discourage him from continuing to pursue her. Furthermore, another Athenian woman, Helena, repeatedly professes her love to Demetrius just to be ridiculed…show more content…
We are first introduced to Helena as Lysander tries to debunk Demetrius’ noble morals, claiming that he has slept with the woman and though she dotes after him, he is untrue. Helena is finally able to speak her perspective of the situation as she explains in the passage that she wishes to understand how Hermia has enchanted these men into loving her. She wants Hermia to “…teach me how you look, and with what art, You sway the motion of Demetrius’ heart” (1.1.192-193). Art is defined as “Skill in doing something, esp. as the result of knowledge or practice” (OED, “art”, noun, sense 1). Helena describes the craft which she feels Hermia is using as an art, a talent or a skill which should be aspired to gain. However, art can also be defined as, “Cunning; artfulness; trickery, pretence; conduct or action which seeks to attain its ends by artificial, indirect, or covert means” (OED, “art”, noun, sense 11a), and the ideas of trickery and artifices’ play heavy in the overall leitmotif of A Midsummer Night’s Dream as well as the underlining concerns of the love triangles
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