Response to Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare

The reading that interested me most was Romeo and Juliet which is William Shakespeare’s lyrical tragedy. This work was presented by Shakespeare in terms of a tragedy involving two lovers whose death brought together their rival families. The story captures the attention of people who love unconditionally and teaches people to hold on to their position in issues concerning love and life without being discouraged by conditions around them.

This work is interesting for me because it talks about an issue that I always take very seriously – love. The story is interesting because the two main characters of the play Romeo and Juliet maintain their love despite the differences between their families. I am amazed that someone can commit suicide due to love. When Juliet finds out that Romeo is dead, she decides to commit suicide. In the play Juliet says, “This is thy sheath; there rust, and let me die” (Gibbons, 1980). This statement demonstrates how Juliet loved Romeo. The death of Romeo was also caused by suicide. Romeo killed himself because he thought that Juliet had died.

This tragedy moved me emotionally. It made me as an audience to sympathize with the two lovers who died because of their love for each other. I specifically felt bad about the death of Romeo because he committed suicide thinking that Juliet was dead, yet in the real sense she was not. In the suicide scene, Romeo says “Thy drugs are quick. Thus with a kiss I die.” This quote from the reading indicates that Romeo committed suicide by drinking poison. While reading the play, I tried to put myself in the shoes of Juliet after finding out that Romeo had died. I felt sympathy for her because she was optimistic that she would be with Romeo for the rest of her life, just to realize that he had died. The suicide chapter of the play gives me a lot of emotional thoughts which leads me to appreciate the power of love.

The play also presents several other interesting themes. The characters play their roles effectively, making it exiting and interesting. For instance, the conversation between Benvolio and Mercutio in Act II scene I was very interesting. While Benvolio considers the love between Romeo and Juliet as a normal love that blinds people, Benvolio believes that the love between Romeo and Juliet had hit the mark. Mercutio says, “If love be blind, love cannot hit the mark.” The language used by Mercutio makes the play even more interesting.

The main theme of the story is love. The love between Romeo and Juliet was the main unifying theme in the play. Most of the scenes of this play focused on the love between this two people. The play also shows that love brings together disagreeable parties. For instance, the house of Montague and the house of Verona were in constant conflict and disapproved the love between Romeo and Juliet. However, when Romeo and Juliet died the two families settled their differences. This indicates that the love between Romeo Juliet was a unifying factor for the two families.

I learned a lot in this work. Some of the key values of life that the play taught me include love and courage. Romeo and Juliet courageously defended their love until death. I have learned that love between two people should be defended and guarded courageously in order to bring harmony and reconciliation in the society. Capulet says, “Poor sacrifices of our enmity”. This means that the death of Romeo and Juliet united them. The play taught me that love does not only bind two people who are in love, but also brings the entire society together. I also learned that one should be patient and fight for love despite the challenges that may exist in the society.

The suicide by Romeo and Juliet also made me to think about the world in a different way. I had never believed in the religion of love which allows people to commit suicide for love. However, the play has made me think differently about this issue. The condition in which Juliet committed suicide seemed justifiable to me because her lover had died for her after thinking that she was dead, and I think suicide was indeed one of the best options for her given the circumstances.

I agree with the idea of Juliet’s suicide but I disagree with the suicide committed by Romeo. While Romeo killed Paris and decided to die without taking time to know about Juliet’s death, Juliet decides to commit suicide because Romeo had sacrificed his life for her. According to me, Romeo’s best option would be to avoid suicide while Juliet’s best option was to follow Romeo’s path by also committing suicide. If Romeo had not committed suicide, Juliet would not also commit suicide.

The work was formally challenging because Shakespeare used a form of language that is poetic and a little difficult to understand. However, this makes the play even more interesting because it makes the reader to become more interested in understanding the story presented in the play.

The use of English language in the play is also interesting. The language is composed of humour, imageries, symbolism and proverbs which make it very interesting. For instance, in Act II scene I Mercutio uses a language of humour by saying, “Now will he sit under a medlar tree, and wish his mistress were that kind of fruit as maids call medlars, when they laugh alone” (Gibbons, 1980). I consider this choice of language humorous, making the play more interesting. The language is beautiful and I would read it again. I enjoy the tone of the language and the comical use of language.

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