Presentation on theme: "In Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. What is the definition of a theme? A theme is an underlying message in a literary work A major theme in Romeo and."— Presentation transcript:
What is the definition of a theme? A theme is an underlying message in a literary work A major theme in Romeo and Juliet is Appearance versus Reality Appearance refers to how people or events seem, or appear to be Reality refers to how things really are
In Romeo and Juliet, people, events and emotions are not always what they appear to be Can you think of instances in the play that support the theme of Appearance versus Reality?
1) Romeo APPEARS to be in love with Rosaline, but it isn’t really love – it is only an immature attraction. Juliet APPEARS to be the perfect girl for Romeo, but... Mercutio tells Romeo that dreams “lie.” We can’t trust the ‘appearance’ of dreams. Even at the party, Romeo is in costume ( a masker ). He is not who/what he seems to be.
Another major theme in Romeo and Juliet is Destiny versus Free Will Destiny is often referred to as a greater force that fatefully guides our actions Free Will is in reference to the idea that we are in control of our own lives Do the characters decide their own fates, or are they victims of fate?
As early as the prologue, the chorus tells us that Romeo and Juliet are “star-crossed” lovers, implying that their fate was pre-written in the stars Destiny Free Will Both Romeo and Juliet will later speak of “defying” the stars, trying to re- write their own destinies
Shakespeare may be questioning whether people have the ability to control their own lives, or are certain individuals doomed, like Romeo and Juliet. Remember Romeo’s quote on the way to the Capulet ball: “But He that hath the steerage of my course direct my sail!” (1. 5. 112-3)
The theme of Destiny versus Free Will is reinforced by the MOTIF of stars and heavenly images. (Astronomical Motif) A motif is a recurring image or idea throughout a literary work that helps to reinforce or support a theme
The second major motif in Romeo and Juliet is religious imagery. As we watch Baz Luhrman’s film of Act 1, list as many visual examples of Religious and Astronomical motifs on the chart
Benvolio says he will make Rosaline, Romeo’s “swan” look like a crow. Romeo says Juliet is a “dove” amongst crows. Birds are mentioned and used as symbols throughout the entire play.