Homework Help

Please explain the theme of the song "What is a Youth?" in the 1968 movie version of...

user profile pic

josh177 | Student, Grade 9 | eNotes Newbie

Posted December 13, 2010 at 12:49 PM via web

dislike -1 like

Please explain the theme of the song "What is a Youth?" in the 1968 movie version of Romeo and Juliet.

1 Answer | Add Yours

user profile pic

kmalone614 | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Adjunct Educator

Posted January 5, 2011 at 9:14 AM (Answer #1)

dislike 1 like

The song "What is a Youth," performed during the party scene in Romeo and Juliet, is about the radical extremes associated with youth, particularly youth who are in love. Lines like the following also foreshadow many events of the play:

"A rose will bloom
It then will fade
So does a youth."

Already, early on in the movie, the end is foreshadowed in this song. As previously mentioned, this song also deals with the idea of the impetuous and radical nature of youth who are in love. It talks about how misguided these hormanal youths are. This is illustrated in the following lines:

"What is a youth? Impetuous fire.
What is a maid? Ice and desire.
The world wags on."

Join to answer this question

Join a community of thousands of dedicated teachers and students.

Join eNotes