William Shakespeare's Themes of Love and Hate In Romeo and Juliet

William Shakespeare's Themes of Love and Hate In Romeo and Juliet

Shakespeare deals with the themes of love and hate very effectively,

by using, different language, sonnets and emotions sometimes

expressing them by the use of soliloquies.

One could say, Shakespeare adopted these strong ideas from the Greeks

of the fourth century. Greeks often performed plays known as, '

tragedies', where the tempting of fates or Gods was a wrongdoing.

Therefore whoever did wrong would pay sooner or later. This idea can

be reflected in Romeo and Juliet.

Right at the beginning of the play the chorus recites a sonnet. It

frames the story- line and prepares the audience for a tragic play by

using adjectives, quatrains and links (patterns) to the play.

'From forth the fatal loins of these two foes,

A pair of star-crossed lovers take their life:

Doth with their death bury their parents' strife.'

As you can see the idea of 'fate' is being used and it also clearly

outlines that the love of the two characters with their tragic deaths

ended the hatred of the two families. Also the hate of the families

ended the love of the two characters due to the lovers death.

Shakespeare begins the first scene of the play with hatred by using

dramatic language and insults. However, the play soon moves on towards

the theme of love, which contrasts well with the hatred.

Shakespeare liked to switch from love to hate or hate to love to shoe

how close the two elements are and how they run in parallel together.

Act one, Scene five is set in a masquerade ball at the capulets house

where Romeo observes the scene.

Once the servants have left, Capulet begin...

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...iet and

contradict each other. Such as Act one scene five, where hate (insults

from Tybalt) contradicts with love (Romeo falling in love with

Juliet.) Not only would the text be written with strong language, but

it would have been recited in a way that would make a strong sense of

love or hate.

Hate and Love are sometimes treated as 'Names' like 'a Montague' or 'a

Capulet' this causes confusion, especially between Romeo and Juliet.

The name Montague or Capulet has also occasionally been spoken as if

the identities are evil substances. This causes edginess and hateful


All the structure of the play is built around love and hate, including

all the themes and contrasts. Shakespeare uses this structure to deal

with the themes of love and hate which creates a typical

tragedy-'Romeo and Juliet.'
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