Love, Chaos, and Disorder in Midsummer Night’s Dream

1204 WordsJun 20, 20185 Pages
Love can be quite chaotic at times. As much as poets and songwriters promote the idea of idyllic romantic love, the experience in reality is often fraught with emotional turmoil. When people are in love, they tend to make poor decisions, from disobeying authority figures to making rash, poorly thought-out choices. In the play A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Shakespeare uses various motifs to illustrate how love, irrationality, and disobedience are thematically linked to disorder. First, Shakespeare uses the motif of the seasons early on in the play to solidify the connection between love gone awry and chaos. The initial romantic conflict is established when Egeus brings his daughter, Hermia, to Theseus to try and force her into marrying…show more content…
Another crucial aspect of love and the disorder that often follows in its wake is the idea of irrationality. In A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Shakespeare uses the motif of dreams to show how irrationality and love are connected. By Act 5, Scene 1, all of the play’s romantic conflicts have finally been resolved. As Theseus and Hippolyta reflect on the tumultuous relationships of Hermia, Lysander, Demetrius, and Helena, it becomes clear that they each have a different opinion on the subject. Although the young Athenians claimed to have awoken from a strange dream to find their conflicts resolved, Theseus and Hippolyta are not so sure whether to believe their story. Theseus, the more cynical of the two, believes that the four lovers were simply driven to insanity by love, and that the fairy world was probably just a figment of their imaginations. Hippolyta, on the other hand, believes that there is more than meets the eye to this story, and that it could be the truth. Both give interesting reasons for their viewpoints. In Theseus’ opinion, the entire situation was merely a series of poor decisions caused by the irrationality that inevitably comes with love. Drawing a sharp distinction between the “cool reason” of people in full possession of their faculties, Theseus claims that people in love have “seething brains” and are mentally similar to lunatics. He also states that “as imagination
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