How far Shakespeare presents Lord Capulet as a good father in this whole conversation. Part 1)
In Act 1 Scene 2 Capulet is portrayed as a considerate, responsible and loving father who is concerned about what is best for his daughter and see her as more than just an ‘object’ to be married off which isn’t common as it was a very patriarchal society. By displaying these forms of affection the audiences’ first impression of him is that he is a good father. In Act 1 Scene 2 a noable young kinsmen of the Prince, asking Capulet for his daughter's hand in marriage. Capulet responds to Paris and tells him that Juliet has “not seen the change of fourteen years", he also describes Juliet as not yet “ripe to be a bride”, this implies that Capulet believes that Juliet is too young for marriage, which in that society would seem slightly unusual as 14 is not an early age at which to get married, by saying this Tybalt respodes with ”younger than [Juliet} are happy mothers made”, which again shows that girls younger than Juliet are already mothers and that Juliet is not too ‘young’ for marriage, but when Capulet responds with a continued agrarian metaphor (lines 11-12, relating to land) “ and too soon marred are those early made” turns things around indicating that he does not agree (or does not fully agree) with marrying at such a young age possibly because of the experience of Juliet and his previous children and furthermore, one could interpret the word ‘marred’, in a myriad of different ways, for instance the audience may well interpret as it meaning an expanding fruit (“ripen”) , being marred (spoilt) by early marriage which alludes to how early marriage can cause young child birth and the word “ripen” alludes to motherhood, this may mean that he fears Juliet to grow up too quickly, and transition from childhood into motherhood it could also mean that he is marring Juliet’s virginity and a slight foreshadowing of the marring that is indeed to come by "those so early made" (Juliet & Romeo), there may also be an additional pun on marred/ “merd” (dung/fertilizer). This small section displays Capulet’s concern about welfare of his daughter and alludes to him not wanting her to be maried at such and early age which shows that he does not just see her as an object like most men see women in the patriarchal society, which that he cares for Juliet and is a good father, in addition when Shakespeare uses the word “ripen” it evokes the ideas of flowers and frequently flowers are meant to symbolise beauty- which means that he does not just care about Juliet getting married but considers her beautiful- and also the image of a flower that will develop and grow overtime and with time with have increasing beauty and happiness, which indicates that he wants Paris to wait as when Juliet “ripens” he will have a bigger advantage after waiting. When Capulet is speaking with Paris about the marriage of his daughter Juliet he is exceptionally tranquil and open, and seems to put his daughters desires first when he states that Paris should “woo her”, “get her heart // My will to her consent is but a part // and she agreed, within her scope of choice”. At this point Capulet makes out that he merely wants what his daughter wants (but contradicts himself later in the play as he forces Juliet into a marriage she does not want), this re-establishes the theme of person versus society, still Juliet’s status as a young woman leaves her with no authority or choice in any social situation. Like any other female in their civilization, she will be passed from the control of one man to the next; and however good of a father Capulet may be it is a social expectation for him to arrange a marriage, and it is evident that (Romeo and Juliet are subjects to parental influence as Juliet’s father can force Juliet to marry whomever he wants, and Romeo may be dragged into fights due to his families feud with the Capulets) the parental influence of tragedy becomes a tool of...
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