top-rated free essay

How Does Shakespeare Present Confilct in Act 1?

By willrhodes Sep 20, 2010 686 Words
How does Shakespeare present conflict in Act 1?
During Romeo and Juliet, Shakespeare bases a lot of the play on conflict. Immediately, from the first scene, it is obvious there is a lot of conflict present. The conflict in Romeo and Juliet consists of two opposing families and is expressed in a number of words and ways. These include conflict such as a struggle between two characters in the play or even conflict between just one person. In his/her actions. Having this conflict has a real positive impact on a play making it exciting, fun, interesting and leaving people wanting to know more! It’s as much present as it was back in Shakespearean times as it is now. An example of modern conflict is shown in the popular soap opera, Eastenders. In this play it is clear that conflict is present, and is shown in the beginning, in the prologue. The prologue is written in a sonnet, which is 14 lines that follow certain rules. This almost prepares the reader/audience for a whole play full of conflict. It does this by saying lyrics like “from ancient grudge break to new mutiny”.

This is basically telling the audience that, from the hate between the two families, a fight breaks out. So therefore there will be conflict immediately from the start. It also reads
“Continuance of their parents rage”
This then tells us that the conflict is also in the parents and has been present for a long time. This therefore makes it seem hard for peace ever to be found. Even if you just selected a few words from this text you would be able to see how clearly conflict is present. “Grudge…civil… blood…death”

Any of these words are immediately associated and bring up images of conflict in many people’s minds.

The first example of actual conflict is shown at the start. It’s also one of the most obvious presented in the play. The “ancient” feud between the two houses. This is shown by insults being thrown at each other and also physical violence. The result of this first conflict is a key component in the play. As you later find out that, anyone next to break the peace in Verona, shall have to face consequences. This obviously proves deadly for Romeo And Juliet, shown also later in the play. This therefore shows the conflict between not only Montague’s and Capulet’s but their honour and the law.

Another way that conflict is presented is in the choice of language and words he uses. Especially when it keeps appearing repeatedly throughout the book. Such as the word (on page 9, line 86) “Cankered”

This is said many times, and is fully said as “cankered hate”. Cankered meaning like a cancer. This is very clever because when you think about cancer you can associate it a lot to the play, in the form of love and conflict. These associations including: It spreading, eating away at you, being evil and fatal and can really affect anyone.

Lastly Shakespeare also uses oxymoron’s in Romeos speech which is also echoed again by Juliet later on. An example of this is said by Romeo “O brawling Love, O loving hate”
The two lines and selection of words contradict each other and therefore conflict is then presented in the words that he uses and adds to the whole idea of it. It also helps to show the conflict inside his head and confusion which is hurting him. This is therefore also an example of conflict not just between the families, but between, one character and their actions and thoughts inside their head.

Overall, conflict is definitely evident throughout Act 1 and even whole play and is presented in a number of different ways. It’s still very interesting to see how ideas are still very similar in modern films and shows. Especially when you watch the recent film. You see how his ideas of conflict presented are still very easy to see and use when you think about it in a modern situation.

Cite This Document

Related Documents

  • How Does Shakespeare Present the Theme of Love in Act 1 Romeo and Juliet?

    ...“star-cross’d” Shakespeare is alluding to destiny, the inevitability of the two characters’ paths crossing each other and suggests that the outcome is going to be fatal. The Prologue is written in sonnet form, a form of poetry which is usually used for love and by doing this Shakespeare is suggesting to his audience that that the play is...

    Read More
  • How Does Shakespeare Present Conflict in Act 3 Scene 1?

    ...How does Shakespeare present conflict in act 3 scene 1? In William Shakespeare’s play ‘Romeo and Juliet’ there is alot of conflict particularly in act 3 scene 1. The audience find conflict interesting to watch because it creates drama and tension. Shakespeare uses many dramatic devices to present this; some of these techniques include for...

    Read More
  • How does Shakespeare present love and hate in Act 1 scene 1 and Act 1 scene 5?

    ...How does Shakespeare present love and hate in Act 1 scene 1 and Act 1 scene 5? Shakespeare wrote the play of two lovers', Romeo and Juliet. Thought to be, one of the greatest, tragic love stories of all time, however, throughout the play, Shakespeare contrasts love with hate at every possible moment. The two themes, love and hate, are like tw...

    Read More
  • How Does Shakespeare Explore Conflict in Act 3?

    ...How does Shakespeare explore conflict in Act three? Shakespeare shows and explores conflict throughout Romeo and Juliet and is evidently one of the main topics illustrated in the play. Act three is one of the acts where conflict is most prominent. There is a wide range of conflict visible created by Shakespeare using a lot of many different ...

    Read More
  • How Does Shakespeare Present the Characters of Tybalt and Benvolio

    ...and quick to draw his sword when he feels his pride has been injured. Once drawn, his sword is something to be feared. He hates the Montague's Tybalt is the nephew of Lady Capulet. As a young man, he seems to represent what Capulet must have been in his young days; but he has none of the redeeming features of his uncle and is more like his aun...

    Read More
  • How Does Shakespeare Present Feelings of Love

    ...How does Shakespeare present strong feelings about love in ‘Romeo and Juliet’ and ‘The Merchant of Venice’ In Romeo and Juliet and The Merchant of Venice There are many examples of strong love. The two most prominent examples of strong love are romantic love and unrequited love. In Romeo and Juliet, there appears to be more examples ...

    Read More
  • “How does Shakespeare present Macbeth as a disturbed character in Act 1 of Macbeth?”

    ...“How does Shakespeare present Macbeth as a disturbed character in Act 1 of Macbeth?” William Shakespeare wrote the play “Macbeth” in 1606. It, as the title suggests, follows the story of a Scotsman named Macbeth and how, after the prophecy of three witches, sees his status evolve from a general in the Kings army to becoming the King him...

    Read More
  • How Does Shakespeare Present Different Types Of Love In Twelfth Night

    ...How Does Shakespeare Present Different Types Of Love In Twelfth Night? Shakespeare presents lots of different types of love using a variety of techniques. The plot of twelfth night is very complex and has a lot of thing happening at a time, there is never a time where there is only one thing happening other than the end when all get reveal...

    Read More

Discover the Best Free Essays on StudyMode

Conquer writer's block once and for all.

High Quality Essays

Our library contains thousands of carefully selected free research papers and essays.

Popular Topics

No matter the topic you're researching, chances are we have it covered.