Romeo and Juliet | Literature Criticism Critical Essay by Jean-Marie Maguin

This literature criticism consists of approximately 16 pages of analysis & critique of Romeo and Juliet.
This section contains 4,774 words
(approx. 16 pages at 300 words per page)
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Critical Essay by Jean-Marie Maguin

SOURCE: “Shakespeare, Hypnos, and Thanatos: Romeo and Juliet in the Space of Myth,” in Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet, edited by Jay Halio, University of Delaware Press, 1995, pp. 37-48.

In the essay below, Maguin calls attention to parallels between Romeo and Juliet and the classical legend of Psyche and Cupid, which, like the play, conflates sleep, death, and the allure of love and suicide.

Proverbial wisdom records that sleep is the image of his brother—or, as the Elizabethans put it, his “cousin”—death. Such utterances hark back to classical myth and folklore that make Hypnos, or Sleep, and Thanatos, or Death, two fatherless sons of that primitive, complex, and awesome divinity Nyx, or Night. Let me first emphasize the dynamics of the proverbial phrase. The model is Death, not Sleep. Sleep is...

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This section contains 4,774 words
(approx. 16 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Jean-Marie Maguin