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A review of shakespeares tragedy romeo and juliet

It wasn't a sleeper hit, either: Considering the state of printing press technology at the time, that's kind of a big deal. Shakespeare adapted the storyline from Arthur Brookes' popular Tragicall History of Romeus and Juliet 1562a long English poem based on a story that dates back to a novella by Masuccio Salernitano called " Mariotto and Giannozza " 1476.

But it's not just a remake. Ever heard of the Tragicall History of Romeus and Juliet?

BOOK REVIEW : Romeo and Juliet By William Shakespeare

Yeah, we thought not. Shakespeare made the story immortal—or, at least extremely long-lived. The balcony scene alone Act 2, Scene 2 in most editions of the play is one of the most memorable and recognizable moments in all of Western literature. Despite its fancy pedigree, Romeo and Juliet is also considered to be one of Shakespeare's most accessible works.

Along with Julius Caesar, it's typically one of the first Shakespeare plays studied by Western students, who get a dose of Elizabethan theater, Shakespearean language, and, of course, love poetry. And it's not just a school favorite; it's an audience favorite, too.

Romeo and Juliet has been performed countless times by world-renowned theater companies and remains an audience favorite. It's also one of the most adapted plays of all time—Franco Zeffirelli made it into an Oscar winning film in 1968 and the play was also adapted into a Tony Award winning musical, West Side Story 1957.

But is it really nothing more than a silly blockbuster? Is reading Romeo and Juliet the equivalent of students 400 years from now studying Love Actually? Famous seventeenth-century journaler Samuel Pepys dismissed the plays as "the worst that ever [he] heard in [his] life" source. And even we have to admit that Romeo seems a lot more like an emo teenager than a man in the grips of immortal passion. Well, you're not going to wait around for us to tell you, are you?

A lot of people think the balcony scene is about as deep as a twelve-year-old interpretation of true love. Boy meets girl, they stare into each other's eyes and say a lot of poetic things. Anybody who makes it past the age of fourteen, of course, realizes that's not what love is about. Swearing undying commitment to each other fifteen minutes after they've met isn't love—it's infatuation.

  1. But Romeo and Juliet is not just about what happens when two hormonal teenagers collide. And that's not even to mention your friends, who've stopped inviting you to hang out.
  2. How do you negotiate the minefield?
  3. Romeo and Juliet is at least partly a tragedy about the clash between private love you and your honey and public interest convenient marriages, or paying bills, or raising a family. Boy meets girl, they stare into each other's eyes and say a lot of poetic things.
  4. Shakespeare became the most famous playwright ever because of Romeo and Juliet and many of his other works.

But Romeo and Juliet is not just about what happens when two hormonal teenagers collide. The real moral of the story here is that sometimes love is doomed to fail, and that applies no matter how old you are and what time you're living in.

Because no one loves in a vacuum. In the first few weeks of a love affair, you might feel like you and your lovah are in a world of your own—but pretty soon, reality comes crashing back. You've got homework to do, or jobs to go to; parents breathing down your neck, or employers wondering why you keep calling in sick. And that's not even to mention your friends, who've stopped inviting you to hang out.

But let's say that you do stay together. You marry your teenage sweetheart and set up house together.

  • But is it really nothing more than a silly blockbuster?
  • And it's not just a school favorite; it's an audience favorite, too;
  • Friar Laurence sends word to Romeo so that he can rescue her from her tomb;
  • You marry your teenage sweetheart and set up house together;
  • Anybody who makes it past the age of fourteen, of course, realizes that's not what love is about.

Pretty soon, you've got bills to pay, maybe kids to feed, or you're the one who's waking up at 6AM to take the dog for a walk again. Romeo and Juliet is at least partly a tragedy about the clash between private love you and your honey and public interest convenient marriages, or paying bills, or raising a family.

Romeo and Juliet

We may not have quite the same roadblocks that Romeo and Juliet have, but intense, passionate love can be just as antisocial in the 21st century as it was in the 16th century. How do you negotiate the minefield?

Well, hopefully better than Romeo and Juliet did.