The Conflict Between Unrequited Love And Family Duty

Decent Essays
Romeo and Juliet is a well-known play written in the 1590’s by William Shakespeare. It is based on the tragic story of the forbidden romance between two offspring (lovers) from rival families at war. In this essay I will explain how Shakespeare explores the conflict between unrequited love and family duty. The Montagues and Capulets are two extremely powerful families whom are both rich in wealth and dignity that are in heavy feud with one another. In those days procreation was a necessity ;however, to procreate- Marriage was compulsory as Italy was exceptionally rich in Catholic laws. Consequently, the main reason of marriage wasn’t love, but to instead procreate. It was common for families to pressure their children to have offspring in order to carry on power, pride and social reputation of their families’ name if they passed away. This was particularly important for Juliet considering she is female. In the 1500’s, men and women had different roles and responsibilities: Men were known to fight and uphold their dignity whereas women would be passive and obedient to their parents or partner. It was seen as a duty by their parents/partner’s to force them to procreate as duty was very important. However, men and women were allowed to experience love outside marriage and this was commonly known as ‘Courtly Love’. Courtly love is a forbidden love usually between a knight and a married women. Courtly love was thought of as ‘pure’ love. People often had romances outside of
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