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How can I use a thematic statement to write a 5-paragraph literary essay arguing and...

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hema0125 | Student, Grade 11 | (Level 1) eNoter

Posted May 11, 2013 at 4:44 PM via web

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How can I use a thematic statement to write a 5-paragraph literary essay arguing and proving the existence of a one of the following themes in the play Romeo and Juliet?

1. Fate vs. Free Will

2. Love

3. Moderate vs. Rash Behaviour

4. Conflict: Hatred and Enmity 

5.Old vs. Young: The Generational Divide

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litteacher8 | Middle School Teacher | (Level 1) Distinguished Educator

Posted May 12, 2013 at 4:34 AM (Answer #1)

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Your thematic statement should be a thesis statement where you choose one of the themes and explain how it is represented.

For example, if you choose the first one, fate vs. free will, you would write a simple, direct statement explaining how it is present in the play.

In the play Romeo and Juliet, the theme of fate vs. free will is expressed through the use of “star-crossed lovers” in the Prologue and the repeated coincidences and misunderstandings.

You could then include quotations to support this point, from the prologue and the other points in the play.  An example of a coincidence might be when the servant asks Romeo to help him read the list of people he needs to invite to the Capulet’s party.


Perhaps you have learned it without book. But I pray,

can you read any thing you see?


Ay, If I know the letters and the language. (Act 1, Scene 2)

The inclusion of the term “star-crossed” in the Prologue and the use of coincidences and misunderstandings throughout the play seems to support the idea of fate.  Yet choices that Romeo and Juliet make could support free will.  It is up to you to decide!


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