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“Romeo and Juliet” – The balcony Scene Essay

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❶In view of what I have been saying, there is a considerable irony in the fact that the name whose referential authority Juliet has begun by questioning should be rehabilitated before the scene concludes, though in what at the time might appear to be transfigured form:.

That Which We Call a Name: The Balcony Scene in Romeo and Juliet

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There is a dimension of ballet in the balcony scene, as Juliet is called in by the nurse, comes back on stage, and then repeats the action. The structure of Structure of II, ii, ll. Having little else of substance to say, Juliet asks about time tomorrow when shall send for Romeo, and then offers the alternative couplet: When she departs, Romeo now alone concludes scene with two rhymed couplets: Sleep dwell upon they eyes, peace in thy breast! Thus, in addition to the natural sympathy that Romeo and Juliet evoke and to the beauty of the language they exchange, Shakespeare employs a number of technical, even experimental devices to increase the power of the balcony scene.

Accessed September 14, Leave your email and we will send you an example after 24 hours In view of Romeo's exaggerated literary proclivities, the tendency to live his own life as a projection of the written word which betrays itself among other things in the Petrarchan idiom he habitually employs, it is significant that the event initiating the action of the drama should be his reading a communication not addressed to himself.

It is made perfectly clear in the play that it is Romeo's literacy, and not only chance or destiny, that occasions this incident. Capulet, organizing a feast at his house in accordance with an ancient family custom, has supplied his servant with a list of invited guests, but the servant 'can never find what names the writing person hath here writ. I must to the learned' I. When the servant encounters Romeo immediately afterwards the following conversation takes place:.

God gi' good e'en; I pray, sir, can you read? Ay, mine own fortune in my misery. Perhaps you have learned it without book. But I pray can you read anything you see? Ay, if I know the letters and the language. Ye say honestly; rest you merry. Stay, fellow, I can read. Romeo examines the invitation list, learns that Rosaline will be present at the feast, and allows himself to be persuaded by Benvolio to put in an appearance himself. This is only the first of a number of written communications alluded to in the play, and the point that is perhaps worth noting is that there is not a single instance of one of these missives arriving directly at its intended destination.

Tybalt, the kinsman to old Capulet, hath sent a letter to his father's house. A challenge, on my life. Romeo will answer it. Any man that can write may answer a letter.

Nay, he will answer the letter's master, how he dares, being dared. In the following encounter between Romeo and Tybalt, however, Romeo does not mention receiving the letter, and it is to be wondered whether he would have shown himself abroad, and run the risk of being embroiled in a quarrel on his wedding day, had he in fact done so. There is proleptic irony in Mercutio's comment that 'any man that can write may answer a letter', for Romeo's conspicuous literacy does not enable him to receive the letter that Friar Laurence sends to inform him of the design he has put into operation to assist the two lovers, and it is this failure to read a letter addressed to himself that annihilates once and for all any possibility of a comic resolution to the play.

The symmetry between the letter from Capulet that Romeo reads by chance, and the letter from Friar Laurence that he does not read by chance, is emphasized by the close conjunction of Capulet's instruction to a servant 'So many guests invite as here are writ' IV. It would perhaps not be too much of an exaggeration to suggest then that it is the miscarriage of letters that both initiates what appears to be the comic trajectory of the play and precipitates its tragic conclusion, and that Romeo's fate therefore lies at the mercy of a world of 'letters' that, for good or ill, manifestly fail to achieve their proposed object.

Even the explanatory letter that Romeo himself writes to his father before taking his own life—and it is perhaps significant that one of his first impulses after having taken this drastic decision is to procure ink and paper V. Romeo's subjugation to the world of language, in all its manifestations, is thus a fundamental datum of the play, yet it is precisely this servitude that Juliet calls into question at the beginning of the balcony scene.

Names, she reasons, are extraneous to the individual, and it is therefore folly to allow one's response to a human being to be determined by his name. And what is true of names in particular is also applicable to language at large, which encodes and enforces patterns of perception and conduct that, however deeply embedded in the corporate consciousness of the community, are not automatically binding on the individual.

But Juliet, it ironically turns out, is no less inextricably immersed in the world of language than Romeo himself. Juliet's endeavour to resolve one paradox, that of loving an enemy, immediately plunges her into another, one hinted at already in her apostrophe to Romeo: In thisquestion, and throughout the meditations that follow, the name Romeo functions in two distinct referential capacities: As Jacques Derrida points out in his suggestive discussion of the balcony scene, Juliet's injunction to Romeo to 'Deny thy father and refuse thy name' II.

The words she speaks are therefore discharging a function within a linguistic community after all, although it is precisely the sovereignty of that community she is implicitly impugning when she muses upon the irrelevance of names to the person. Carried away by his own feelings, Romeo is at first only too willing to submit to Juliet's decree, permitting her in effect to be the arbiter of language and its meanings.

I take thee at thy word. Call me but love, and I'll be new baptis'd: Henceforth I never will be Romeo. It is perhaps symptomatic of their different attitudes towards language that whereas Juliet wants to divest Romeo of a name that for her is charged with problematic connotations, Romeo himself immediately stakes his claim to a new name appropriate to what he deems to be his new reality.

But the futility of the attempt on the part of both characters to dispense with publicly sanctioned names becomes ironically manifest a moment later, when Juliet realizes she is being overheard, and the problem arises of how Romeo is to identify himself if not through his name:.

What man art thou that thus bescreen'd in night So stumblest on my counsel? Although Romeo, taking his cue from Juliet's remarks, refrains from directly pronouncing his own name, the anxious circumlocutions to which he resorts serve nonetheless to identify him in relation to that name, if only in a negative respect:.

My name, dear saint, is hateful to myself Because it is an enemy to thee. Had I it written, I would tear the word. My ears have yet not drunk a hundred words Of thy tongue's uttering, yet I know the sound.

Art thou not Romeo, and a Montague? Neither, fair maid, if either thee dislike. Things go from bad to worse, for in order to communicate their love the two young people are obliged to fall back on the very language whose authority they have effectively denied. At this point Juliet is confronted with the not inconsiderable difficulty of how much she is to believe Romeo in his protestations of passion, and once again the problem resolves into that of whether, and in what sense, one can take another's word for anything:.

Dost thou love me? At lovers' perjuries, They say, Jove laughs. Furthermore, she acknowledges candidly enough that there are circumstances in which she too would be capable of distorting words for her own purposes, and thus of widening still further the rift between verbal statement and subjective truth:.

And that this is no empty threat is indicated in the fact that Juliet will later demonstrate herself to be an accomplished prevaricator in her dealings with her family, employing language as an instrument of dissimulation in order to be true to her own emotional world. The language that the lovers have both, in their different ways, sought to exclude from the garden therefore enters again at their tacit instigation, attended with all the fallibilities, hazards and deceptions inherent in the public use of language.

Not only is the language that the lovers themselves use potentially mendacious, but it also imposes its own conventions and its own perverse rules. This becomes ironically apparent when Romeo strives to find adequate expression for his feelings, and notwithstanding what we must suppose to be the sincerity of his sentiments allows himself to be carried away on the flood of his own rhetoric, lettinglanguage and its stereotypes assume control once more: When Juliet interrupts him with the injunction not to swear by the moon, depriving him suddenly of the literary coordinates which are all he has to orientate himself by, he is left completely at a loss, and rather pathetically inquires: Juliet admonishes him not to swear at all, or, at most, to 'swear by thy gracious self' II.

But when Romeo attempts to oblige her, he lapses once more into a conventional formula 'If my heart's dear love—' [II. Later it looks suspiciously as if Romeo is about to embark on another of his fights when he exclaims 'So thrive my soul—' II. Not only does the language which Juliet has sought to banish refuse to be banished, but it dominates the proceedings to the point of parodying itself.

Romeo and Juliet is a play about teenage love that breaks through the conflict of two families, the Montagues and the Capulets. Act II scene 2 - or the balcony scene - one of the best-known scenes in all of Shakespeare, symbolises many of the broader themes of this play. The balcony scene is an important part of the story. It tells us more about the characters and their personalities, and what they are willing to do for each other.

Before this scene, we have seen the party, where Romeo and Juliet first meet and supposedly fall in love. At the end of the scene, Romeo goes to see a friend of his, Friar Lawrence about getting married to Juliet. We know from the prelude that both Romeo and Juliet are going to die, so we can understand that this is a cause to their deaths and that Romeo is unwittingly compounding the problem.

Scene 2 comes immediately after a particularly short episode with Mercutio and after all the action of the party. Romeo on stage alone would have a powerful theatrical effect on the audience.

The soliloquy is a dramatic tool used so that characters can share their feelings with the audience and here Romeo expresses the extent to which Juliet has affected him. This imagery also tells us of the distance he feels between her because of the social status that separates them; their families are in a bitter war. We can see here that he is somewhat immature, and despite having sworn his love for Rosaline at the beginning of the play, after meeting a girl once at a party he has already got over this and is after the next woman — he is a fickle adolescent.

There is also little difference between the love he describes here and the love he expressed for Rosaline. This presents teenage love and gives us the impression that even though Romeo swears his love for Juliet, it still may only be a phase, which he may get over that very weekend. But then Romeo- upon seeing Juliet for the first time in this scene- expresses his genuine feelings for her: O that she knew she were!

The use of the balcony is significant in this scene as well. It shows that Romeo is looking up to Juliet, and she is above him not only in social status, but also in maturity. This shows that she is only imagining what could have been and is considering the consequences and obstacles of their love, whereas Romeo does not dwell on these and without any hesitation he is risking his life for Juliet.

She also sees her boundaries, and recognises that her and Romeo are at different ends of the spectrum; two ends that are never meant to meet and only the most severe consequences will emerge if they do. She then goes on to say how she would be willing to change her name, if he would only swear his love for her.

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Romeo and Juliet is a heartbreaking play about two lovers who come from rival families. The play is filled with dramatic irony that suggests they are destined for tragedy. Act 2 Scene 2 or ‘The Balcony Scene’ has a larger effect on the rest of the play than all the other scenes I feel. This is because it is concerned with nearly all of the recurring themes during the play.

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How Does Shakespeare present idyllic teenage love in the Balcony Scene? I was told to rewrite this one with more detail so here goes: Romeo and Juliet is a play about teenage love that breaks through the conflict of two families, the Montagues and the Capulets.

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Romeo and Juliet-Act 2 scene 2 - Balcony scene The balcony scene in and Romeo and Juliet is the most iconic and recognised scene, because it represents young love, and symbolises the power of youth, as Romeo and Juliet try to put right the mistakes of their elders. Free Essay: Balcony Scene (Act 2, Scene 1) in Romeo and Juliet is almost certainly the most famous scene throughout the world. The prevalent reason for it.

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- Balcony Scnece in William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet The balcony scene in and Romeo and Juliet is the most iconic and recognised scene, because it represents young love, and symbolises the power of youth, as Romeo and Juliet try to put right the mistakes of their elders. Act II, scene ii of Romeo and Juliet is commonly known as the “balcony scene,” and although this designation may be inaccurate (Shakespeare’s stage directions call for Juliet to appear at a “window,” not on a balcony), this scene has been quoted from, played, and misplayed more than any other in all of the Bard’s works.