Theories Of Romeo And Juliet Tragic Hero

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The tragic hero is the protagonist of the story; the purpose of a tragic hero is to evoke sad emotions, such as pity or fear from the audience. The flaw or mistake of the tragic hero leads to their downfall. Although the hero has been defeated, humanity is shown to have redeeming qualities. Three main theories of the tragic hero are the Aristotelian model, the Shakespearean model, and the modern tragic hero. Each model has five defining characteristics, which are nobility, hamartia, downfall, anagnorisis, and suffering. In the Shakespearean mode of tragedy, the play Romeo and Juliet best models the tragic hero. For instance, nobility is characterized by being upper class and having elevated character. Romeo satisfies both these criteria through…show more content…
In addition, Romeo’s hamartia, or his fatal error that ultimately brings about his doom, lies in his impulsiveness which drives him to kill Tybalt, Paris and eventually himself. The tragic hero also has a downfall, where his circumstances are reversed and he gradually loses power. In Romeo’s example, his love for Juliet causes Romeo to become exiled. In Shakespearean tragedy, the anagnorisis, or the change from ignorance to the recognition of the hamartia, is not always recognized by the tragic hero. While it does not appear Romeo acknowledged his own lack of self-control, both Friar Laurence and Juliet seem aware after Juliet awakes from her sleeping potion surrounded by the Friar and a dead Paris and Romeo (who died only minutes earlier). Lastly, the tragic hero endures suffering or death that is not only contained to himself, but to everyone that knew Romeo. Romeo’s death caused Juliet to die also; however, the death of him and his star-crossed lover caused the two rival families to come together. Through the five main characteristics, the Shakespearean tragic hero follows a downward spiral from nobility to suffering, ending in a catastrophe that brings insight into human…show more content…
Such as, Elvis Presley, known as the King of Rock and Roll, worked his way up to fame and fortune, only to be torn apart by a pitiful addiction. Elvis Presley is a shakespearean tragic hero. In the Shakespearean mode of tragedy, the real life person, Elvis Presley best models a tragic hero. For instance, nobility is characterized by being upper class, which Elvis does not particularly satisfy. In addition, Presley’s hamartia, or his fatal error that ultimately brings about his doom, lies in his hubris, which drives him to start an addiction that takes over his whole life. The tragic hero also has a downfall, where his circumstances are reversed and he gradually loses power. In Elvis Presley’s example, his addiction leads his life, but people still loved Elvis because of his amazing music. Furthermore, the anagnorisis, or the change from ignorance to the recognition of the hamartia, is not always recognized by the tragic hero. Lastly, the tragic hero endures suffering or death that is not only contained to himself. Through the five main characteristics, the shakespearean tragic hero follows a downward spiral, ending in a catastrophe that brings insight into human
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