The emotion of love and foolishness in william shakespeares midsummer nights dream

Among those many things is the idea that love is actually a foolish emotion. However, regardless of the foolishness of love, since he gives the play a happy ending, he also depicts love as beneficial rather than harmful. The foolishness of love is portrayed in several places.

The emotion of love and foolishness in william shakespeares midsummer nights dream

Most critics believe the play was written for and performed at an aristocratic wedding, with Queen Elizabeth I in attendance. Scholars estimate the play was written in or when Shakespeare was 31 or 32 years oldat approximately the same time as Romeo and Juliet and Richard II. Obvious plot links exist between A Midsummer Night's Dream and Romeo and Juliet, and critics disagree about which play was written first.

Not only do both dramas emphasize the conflict between love and social convention, but the plot of "Pyramus and Thisbe," the play-within-the-play of A Midsummer Night's Dream, parallels that of Romeo and Juliet. Critics have wondered if Romeo and Juliet is a serious reinterpretation of the other play, or just the opposite: Perhaps Shakespeare is mocking his tragic love story through the burlesque of "Pyramus and Thisbe.

The story of "Pyramus and Thisbe" was originally presented in Ovid's The Metamorphosis, making it one of many classical and folkloric allusions in the play.

Other allusions include Theseus and Hippolyta's wedding, which is described in Chaucer's "Knight's Tale" in The Canterbury Tales, while the theme of a daughter who wants to marry the man of her choice despite her father's opposition was common in Roman comedy.

The fairies that dance and frolic throughout this play were most likely derived from English folk tradition.

About A Midsummer Night's Dream

On the one hand, these creatures have a sinister side — Puck, for example, is also known as Robin Goodfellow, a common name for the devil — but they can also be viewed as fun-loving nature spirits, aligned with a benevolent Mother Nature. The interaction of this eclectic array of characters — from the classically Greek royalty such as Theseus derived from Plutarch's tale of "Theseus" in his Lives of the Noble Grecians and Romans to more traditionally Celtic fairies such as Puck — emphasizes Shakespeare's facility in using elements of the old to create something completely new.

Performance History The first Quarto edition of the play, printed inannounces that it was "sundry times publickely acted, by the Right honourable, the Lord Chamberlaine his seruants.


Its spectacle and its emphasis on dance and magic and song have led it to be interpreted and performed in a variety of ways. For example, numerous composers have been inspired by Shakespeare's Dream.

InPurcell wrote an operatic version, The Fairy Queen, although it contains little of Shakespeare's original story line. The play has also seen many famous, and often infamous, interpretations. For example, the Beerbohm Tree production had live rabbits hopping around the stage, while Peter Brook's production was presented on a bare stage that looked like a big white box.

Most modern productions of the play, including the film, emphasize its erotic, savage undertones. Structure of the Play Showing his usual dexterity in creating coherent dramatic frameworks, Shakespeare here interweaves four separate plots and four groups of characters.

Theseus is a voice of law and reason in the play, as shown by Egeus' entrance into the drama: Egeus needs Theseus to adjudicate a dispute he is having with his daughter, Hermia. The second plot features Hermia and her three friends, Helena, Demetrius, and Lysander. These young lovers stand on the boundaries of the law; like many adolescents, Lysander and Hermia rebel against authority, in this case, by refusing to accept Theseus' laws and, instead, planning to escape from Athenian tyranny.

Although the lovers have one foot in the conventional world of Athens, the play forces them to confront their own irrational and erotic sides as they move temporarily into the forest outside of Athens.

By the end of the play, though, they return to the safety of Athens, perhaps still remembering some of the poetry and chaos of their night in the forest.

This irrational, magical world is the realm of the play's third group of characters: Ruled by Titania and Oberon, the enchanted inhabitants of the forest celebrate the erotic, the poetic, and the beautiful.

While this world provides an enticing sojourn for the lovers, it is also dangerous. All of the traditional boundaries break down when the lovers are lost in the woods. Finally, the adventures of Quince, Bottom, and the other amateur actors compose the play's fourth plot layer.

Shakespeare dexterously weaves these four worlds together, by having characters wandering in and out of each other's world, by creating echoes and parallels among the different groups. For example, the themes of love and transformation reverberate through all levels of the play, creating coherence and complexity.

Coherence is also produced by the play's emphasis on time.

The emotion of love and foolishness in william shakespeares midsummer nights dream

The action is associated with two traditional festivals — Midsummer Eve and May Day — both allied with magic, mayhem, and merriment. To emphasize further the connections between the different groups, many modern directors of the play cast the same actor for the roles of Theseus and Oberon, and for those of Hippolyta and Titania.

Theme While the play rejoices in the magical power of love to transform our lives, it also reminds us of love's excesses and foolishness. More ominously, it tells of the violence often perpetrated in the name of lust: Mythological references to the tales of Philomela and Perogina, for example, remind us that desire results not only in happy, consensual union, but also in rape.

In addition to love's combat with violence, the play shows passion's conflict with reason. For example, Egeus' rigid, patriarchal view of the world clashes with his daughter's notion of love and freedom. Another important theme is the duality between fantasy and reality.

Indeed, the play highlights the imagination and its inventions: One of the central quotes in the play is Theseus' statement that lovers, madmen, and poets share the same propensity to fantasize V.

Shakespeare is concerned with the relationship between imagination and reality and with the way our emotions alter our perceptions. Early in the play, for example, Egeus accuses Lysander of bewitching Hermia with love charms and intriguing songs I.The Theme of Love in A Midsummer Night's Dream by William Shakespeare Words | 3 Pages.

Midsummer Nights Dream - Essay

The Theme of Love in A Midsummer Night's Dream by William Shakespeare When love is in attendance it brings care, faith, affection and intimacy. This is proved true in the spectacular play A Midsummer Night's Dream written by William Shakespeare.

Based on his play, A Midsummer Nights Dream, Lysander a main character explicitly states, "The course of love never runs smooth," expressing an opinion easily relatable to the modern generation. The story of an hour, written by Kate Chopin, is another literary work that easily expresses the same theme.

Shakespeare tells us many things about love in A Midsummer Night's Dream. Among those many things is the idea that love is actually a foolish emotion.

However, regardless of the foolishness of. In A Midsummer Night's Dream, love is a force that characters cannot control, a point amplified by workings of the love potion, which literally makes people slaves to love.

And yet, A Midsummer Night's Dream ends happily, with three marriages blessed by the reconciled fairy King and Queen. The Emotion of Love and Foolishness in A Midsummer Night's Dream by William Shakespeare PAGES 1.

WORDS View Full Essay. More essays like this: a midsummer nights dream, emotion of love, emotion of foolishness. Not sure what I'd do without @Kibin - Alfredo Alvarez, student @ Miami University.

True Love in William Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream I have been studying A Midsummer Night’s Dream and exploring how the characters within this play deal with love and the consequences resulting from falling in love.

“A Midsummer’s Night Dream” by William Shakespeare | Essay Example