Female Characters In Richard Levin's Romeo And Juliet

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Female characters do not normally go into battle or see themselves as the active partner in love. These female characters disprove the connection between femaleness and passivity, maleness and activity. This exceptional status marks appoint of difference between contemporary interpretations and our own. Once exceptions proved the rule because they were exceptional. Today they demonstrate that women may do things which have only been thought to be exceptional. Action also entails isolation for these characters, who lack political allies and genuine friends, and are compelled to reject, or are rejected by, their families. This isolation both strengthens their resolve and weakens their power. LisaJar dine suggests that the presentation of such…show more content…
CoppeliaKahn’s study of the play argues that the "phallic violence" of the feud ties the men to their fathers, and serves as a defense against women.2 7 For Kahn, the play presents the conflict between manhood as violence on behalf of the fathers andmanhood as the act of separation from the father and sexual union with a woman. Richard Levin points out that the feud is perpetuated by the young men, while the true patriarch, the Duke, opposes it and Capulet is a generous host to his enemy’s son. Levin uses this point to deny that the feud is an expression of patriarchalattitudes.28 Both readings have validity. Verona does equate manhood with violence, but the idea that the feud ties the men to their fathers is questionable. Levin is correct in that the older generation do not endorse the violence of the young. But the play does present the feud as an integral part of a societycontrolled by men. Kahn does not argue that this is the patriarchal norm, but rather that it is evidence of the values of assertive masculinity and feminine subordination taken to a violent, but not illogical,

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