Theme Of Gender Inequality In Romeo And Juliet

1493 Words 6 Pages
William Shakespeare’s play, Romeo and Juliet, set in 16th century Verona, contributes to issues of identity still relevant in modern society. The circumstance of living up to their families is an issue that Romeo and Juliet face many times throughout this tragedy. As the book progresses the two lovers forget their family and follow their hearts. However, it is not as easy at it seems to bypass the ones who are trying to stop them. The state of being male or female plays a huge role in the decision making allowed throughout this book. The affiliation Romeo and Juliet have to each of their own family is a blockade in the way of their love as well. Romeo and Juliet’s youth make them very impulsive and their young love ends up being a curse …show more content…
This was especially true to the times of William Shakespeare, but is also true today. This gender inequality can be seen right away when Sampson mentions whilst fighting “’Tis true, and therefore women being the weaker vessels…” (1.1, 14.) This shows us that the men in this play think of woman as being less dominant and ‘weaker.’ This also correlates to the amount of respect and power woman are given in this play. In Juliet’s case she is being forced to marry Paris without her consent. This shows that because Juliet is a female, she is given less of a say in most matters, singly based on the fact that she is not a man. This shows that her unchosen identity affects her for the worse, just for being who she is and has no say in marriage as stated by the Capulet: “Let two more summers wither in their pride, ere we may think her ripe to be a bride,” (1.2, 10). This is true even in today’s society, even though it might not be as harsh. Even something as seemingly harmless as cat calling is sexist. Men don’t have to put up with being hollered at when just simply having to walk by, but because that person walking by has the identity of being a female, she may be hollered at. Romeo is also expected to act in a certain fashion for being male. When Romeo is crying the nurse says “Blubb’ring and weeping, weeping and blubb’ring stand up, stand up, stand, and you be a man…” (3.3, 87). This shows that because Romeo is a man, he is expected to act and present himself in a certain manner, despite how he feels. Throughout Romeo and Juliet sexual identity forces people to do and act a certain way based on their

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