Romeo and Juliet Essay

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Kerschen is a freelance writer and adjunct college English instructor. In this essay, Kerschen considers whether fate, the personal characteristics of Romeo and Juliet, or the demands of justice determine the outcome of the story.

Whenever a tragedy occurs, people want to know what went wrong. They look for the causes, the reasons for the end result. With Romeo and Juliet, the opinions have varied as literary criticism has taken different viewpoints through the years. Since William Shakespeare named the play for the two central characters, the immediate reaction is to look at them for fault. However, Shakespeare is never that simple, so a deeper analysis is warranted.

The great German Shakespearean critic, August von Schlagel, blamed fate for the tragedy, but in the sense that the cruel world is too terrible a place for a love as tender as that of Romeo and Juliet. Instruction books such...

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This section contains 1,697 words
(approx. 5 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Romeo and Juliet Study Guide
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Romeo and Juliet from Shakespeare for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.