William Shakespeare, we all wonder why we have to study him, I mean to us he is just a play writer who died over 400 years ago and has no beneficial value to our lives. But he must have done something important to be remembered today, over 400 years later…
His characters and stories reveal universal truths about the human condition in a way we can all relate to; whether it is the tragic outcome of unchecked greed and ambition, an unrelenting desire for revenge, or the pursuit of love. His representation of human nature is just as real and as relevant today, as it has been through the centuries. The most famous Shakespearian example of betrayal is Julius Caesar, when Caesar is lead to believe that he is going to be king and is then (literally) stabbed in the back by those whom he assumes to be his best friends. Many of today’s movies and books use betrayal as a motivator. Some examples are Martin Scorsese’s The Departed, the story of Mark Zuckerberg’s rise to fame in The Social Network, and even Disney’s The Lion King, which pulls explicitly from HamletA shakespeare theme that is relevant to today is conflict. In all Shakespeare dramas, conflict can take place in many forms, if it be love, war, quarrels within families or quarrels between different families and historical. We see conflict all around us not just on the new when you hear about attacks around the world, but even in your own home, when siblings or families fight, when friends fight even when strangers fight. So conflict is still around today and shakespeare used it well to teach us about conflict.
The 2006 film ‘She’s The Man’ is great way to show shakespeare’s relevance today. ‘She’s The Man’ and the shakespeare play ‘Twelfth Night’, are based on similar theme, characters, plot and settings. In ‘She’s The Man’, Viola dresses up as her brother to be on a soccer team, but when she falls in love with Duke, who in love with Olivia who likes Sebastian who is really Viola, things get complicated.
The plot of ‘Twelfth Nights’ is very similar to ‘She’s The Man’ and so are the characters. Viola, once she is no longer dressed as Cesario, is silenced, but the Duke demonstrates his awareness of the capabilities she showed while masquerading as a man;
Your master quits you; an, for your service done him
So much against the mettle of your sex,
So far beneath your soft and tender breeding
And since you call’d me master for so long,
Here is my hand; you shall from this time be
Your master mistress
(Twelfth Night, Act 5, Scene 1)
Even though you may think is language is not used today, well in some ways it is. Shakespeare created many english words that we use today, they may not be precisely the same but we still use most of them today. The way he used his words is brilliant, it is truly amazing that Shakespeare continually produced both poetry and prose of such a high standard. Though the language itself may seem a little daunting at first glance or difficult to understand when you watch his plays, you can unlock the door to Shakespeare’s language so you can fully appreciate his marvellous work, it is also very truly rewarding. “ My bounty is as boundless as the sea, my love as deep. The more I give thee, the more I have, for both are infinite” (Romeo & Juliet). His work teaches us the power of words as an instrument of communication.
A main theme of shakespeare is appearance and reality. The idea that things are not necessarily what they seem to be is at the heart of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, and in the very title itself. Shakespeare creates plays almost dreamlike in a number of ways; including character frequently falling asleep and wake having dreamed. (“I have had a dream, past the wit of man to say what dream it was”).
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QYknOe7OluE Above all Shakespeare’s plays are truly entertaining, they offer enjoyable literature and reality of real life. Also many themes such as love, war, betrayal, devision, conflict and death. Also many of his plays relate to todays society, so we can say fro these reason that shakespeare is relevant today even if you might not realise it.
His plays touch on timeless themes, his characters are fallible and real, they are quiet like you and me in some ways. His plays are also filled with quotable quotes, there is repository of commonly used phrases and words today and he made a voice to the marginalised in society. In his plays females were not treated differently, intact they had critical roles in his plays and this really spoke to the women of the world that they are as important and equal as men.
Shakespeare plays are really amazing, they take you to another world. His plays my seem daunting at times but once you switch over to the shakespearean language you can really find the inner beauty of Shakespeare’s wonderful plays and words use. He has changed history and touched many lives all around the world today and 400 years ago.