Cook highlights the social, legal, and economic punishments exacted for participating in unsanctioned behavior related to betrothals and marriages and then explores Shakespeare's representation of such irregular behavior in his plays.In conclusion, Cook comments that as Shakespeare treats this type of behavior in both negative and positive ways, there is no easy way to assess his own opinions on the matter.It seems a paradox in the light of unashamed fictiveness of this genre, but he is also representing something more "realistic" than we find in a comedy where Jack hath Jill and all will be well. They must accept the brazen uncertainties of the future before committing themselves to the world-without-end bargain of marriage.
Cook highlights the social, legal, and economic punishments exacted for participating in unsanctioned behavior related to betrothals and marriages and then explores Shakespeare's representation of such irregular behavior in his plays.In conclusion, Cook comments that as Shakespeare treats this type of behavior in both negative and positive ways, there is no easy way to assess his own opinions on the matter.Tags: Dissertation Topics In BankingSolve Math Word Problems FreeWrite My Literature EssayPersuasive Essay On Romeo And JulietThe Columbian Exchange EssayOnline Bachelor'S Degree English Creative WritingExample Of A Good Literature ReviewLoan Originator Business PlanPopulism Vs Elitism Essay
Marriage—typically viewed as the goal of romantic love—is also treated ambiguously by Shakespeare.
In many of Shakespeare's comedies and tragedies, marriages are frequently disrupted by the husband's usually irrational fear of being cuckolded.
Comedy, on the other hand, characteristically closes with happy harmony. A new attitude towards time's open-endedness, and a new mode of expression (a ballad statement by an uncourtly, rustic voice outside the play world, rather than the dramatic utterance of a character in context), takes us further outside the self-contained fictional world of the play about protected university-types.
With the arrival of Marcade, a messenger whose forebears lie in Greek tragedy, Shakespeare stops writing comedy and begins to write romance. ' suggests the underlying idea that everything is 'fit in his place and time' (I. The direction is appropriate to the overall ideas presented by the play, for the men have discovered that the cloistered attempt to discover truth is barren and offending against the law of nature, because, if they had listened, they would have known that 'it is the simplicity of man to hearken after the flesh'.
It is worth remembering, however, that he could in fact find many prototypes for such an ending in romance. In Malory's Le Morte d'Arthur, Sir Marhaus, Sir Gawain, and Sir Uweyn make an oath to separate from their chosen damsels and to return "that day twelve monthe".
"And so they kissed and departed." (Gawain's lady is lost and the other two, at the end of the twelve months, effect a permanent separation, which shows that we cannot be so sure of happiness in the world of romance as in comedy.) At the end of The Parliament of Fowls, the female eagle, wooed by three males, asks Nature to allow her to postpone her choice for a year.In Shakespeare's romantic comedies, the traditional comic ending featuring one or more marriages is often tempered by a more serious note, which questions the finality of that ending.Additionally, the so-called "romantic" comedies may feature a certain degree of tension between romantic and antiromantic elements.Love and Romance In Shakespeare's plays, love and romance are often treated in ambiguous ways.Romantic love frequently ends in death, as in the tragedies, but such love may be presented in an idealized manner, shown to be courageous and unconditional.Similarly, Margaret Loftus Ranald (1979) demonstrates how Elizabethan issues such as betrothals, contracts, premarital intercourse, impediments to marriage, and the marriage ceremony itself are examined by Shakespeare in many plays in a variety of ways.Ranald observes that marriages form the conclusion to every comedy and typically emphasize social harmony; that marriage is treated both humorously and tragically in Shakespeare's poems; that in the tragedies, the subversion of marital relationships results in some form of disaster; and that in the last plays, Shakespeare places less of an emphasis on the particulars of marital law and instead celebrates "the kind of virtuous love that ends in marriage." R. White (essay date 1981) SOURCE: "Shakespeare's Mature Romantic Comedies," in 'Let Wonder Seem Familiar': Endings in Shakespeare's Romance Vision, Humanities Press, Inc., 1985, pp. [In the following essay, White studies the endings of Shakespeare's romantic comedies, maintaining that the playwright experiments with combining the finality of a comic ending with the "endless" nature of a romantic ending.] Love's Labour's Lost is another attempt by Shakespeare to write the kind of romantic comedy pioneered by Lyly, where the ending is qualified and open. 736-40) Even after sober declaration of love from the men, the ladies are still not able to treat the proposals except as 'pleasant jest and courtesy, As bombast and as lining to the time.' In Lyly's fashion, a compromise is struck.Despite the taint on marriage by the specter of cuckoldry or by other subversions, marriage nevertheless occupies a central role in Shakespeare's work.Evelyn Gajowski (1992) examines the qualities shared by Juliet (Romeo and Juliet), Desdemona (Othello), and Cleopatra (Antony and Cleopatra), maintaining that all three women give themselves freely to their beloveds without expecting or demanding any reciprocal emotion. White (1981) demonstrates the way in which the finality of comic endings is often questioned in Shakespeare's romantic comedies.She advises the lusty suitors: Certainly Shakespeare in Love's Labour's Lost is exhibiting a general wariness about the authenticity and validity of fictions, yet he is ironically, also drawing on a fictional model in doing so.Romance includes in its vision many separations and reunions, and it is often arbitrary which of the two events will be chosen to end the work.