Viola's 'Suffering In Twelfth Night'

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Twelfth Night Literary Essay Woody Allen once said, “To love is to suffer. To avoid suffering one must not love. But then one suffers from not loving. Therefore, to love is to suffer; not to love is to suffer; to suffer is to suffer. To be happy is to love. To be happy, then, is to suffer, but suffering makes one unhappy.” As Allen says, love, which comes in forms of romantic and family relations, cannot coexist without pain. William Shakespeare forms the entire plot around a mislaid and disorderly Viola, hesitant of the world because she is disconnected from her brother, whom she loves dearly. Throughout the play, a love triangle formulates between Viola, Olivia and Duke Orsino, with multiple one sided loves. In Twelfth Night, strong family…show more content…
He is her source of happiness, as he is the only family she has left. Without him, she has no reasons to be happy. Trying to replace the empty hole in her heart, Viola decides to dress up as Cesario, who resembles Sebastian, so she can grip onto the memory of him. Due to the gap inside her, Viola abruptly makes the decision to follow Olivia, showing that she is leaning and reliant on the closest thing after Sebastian. Because of the cross dressing, many problems arise, and Viola is only left reconsidering the mess she created. Temporary bliss can vanish whenever loved ones are…show more content…
That is what Viola, Olivia and Duke strive for, with unfortunate results. The first time Olivia speaks to Cesario, she falls for him: “Even so quickly may one catch the plague? (1.5.285). Cesario leaves a great impression on Olivia, and she is struck by love right away, developing smiles at the mere thought of him. If she pursued a man of lower class she would suffer more in the future, as it is socially unacceptable. She is heartbroken, as Viola says she cannot love Olivia back countless times, and the short delight turns to agony. Similarly, Viola starts working for Orsino and falls in love with him instantly. When Viola speaks to Orsino, she is so careless that she almost gives away her disguise: “My father had a daughter loved a man, / as it might be, perhaps, were I a woman, I should your lordship” (2.4.08-110). Looking at him and being in his presence overflows her, but knowing he cannot accept her unless her cover is revealed, brings pain. Likewise, Duke feels happiness when with Olivia, but also sorrow when she rejects him numerous

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