Homosexuality : A Platonic Relationship

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One of the biggest debates when it comes to Shakespeare is if homosexuality is present in his works or not. This debate only began in recent decades when the term “homosexuality” was not seen as completely taboo. Many scholars debate that the “platonic” relationships between men were really participating in homosexual relationships, which were covered in many layers of English Renaissance language. These scholars also argue that women during this time were used for two reasons: 1) to cover up said homosexual relationships and 2) reproduction. Women were used for men’s personal gain. Women were considered manipulative and destructive. On the other hand, some scholars argue that these men were not in homosexual relationships with one another and really considered each other a brother. But really, it all boils down to which play/sonnet. In some cases, there are homosexual relationships shown and in others it is merely a platonic relationship. It all depends on the story that is being portrayed. Theatre of the Renaissance consisted mainly of men – including the parts that were supposed to be portrayed by women. This created an inherently homoerotic environment that was widely accepted. Men had no problem dressing in women’s clothing, putting on make up, and acting as a woman during a play. In Thomas L. Martin and Duke Pesta’s article, “Redressing Cross-Dressed Shakespeare” they note that, “In this theater the attraction of men to beautiful boys—whether those men be on the stage
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