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Discuss the parent/ child relationship in the Capulet household in Romeo and Juliet.I...

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macjlseagul | Student, Grade 9 | (Level 1) Honors

Posted January 11, 2011 at 3:27 PM via web

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Discuss the parent/ child relationship in the Capulet household in Romeo and Juliet.

I think that Juliet was a obedient child until she met Romeo.

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted January 11, 2011 at 7:43 PM (Answer #1)

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If the examination of the parent/ child dynamic is going to be something upon which you will be writing, I would direct your attention and focus to Act III, sc. 4 and 5.  It seems to me that these are important scenes because they show a couple of realities involving the emotional dynamic between Juliet and her parents.  On one hand, I think that the scenes show a fairly strong departure from what Juliet used to be in terms of daughter.  At this point, she seems to be more of a young woman, able to advocate for herself and her needs.  At the same time, I think that the scenes also show how the parental decisions that are being made in her name have little in way of her voice present.  Both of these realities strongly impact how the child/ parent relationship develop.  There is much validity in the argument that Juliet was obedient until she met Romeo.  However, there might be some credence to the idea that part of the reason for her absolute repudiation of her parents is that there was little emotional dynamic that allowed for the child's voice to be heard and acknowledged.  When Lord and Lady Capulet react with vitriol and venom to Juliet's refusal to marriage to Parris,  it is representative of how there is little of her voice in this relationship.  To tell the child that " I am done with thee" or that they can go beg in the streets reflects a chasm that is inevitably going to cause some level of repudiation or rejection.  At the same time, such a reaction almost makes Juliet's departure easier.  In exploring the Capulet family dynamic as one that never validated the child's voice, Shakespeare might be indicating how parent/ child relationships are doomed without this inclusion present, on some level.

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