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In A Midsummer Night's Dream, what is it about the Indian boy that causes Oberon and...

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catasauqua | eNotes Newbie

Posted November 14, 2007 at 10:20 AM via web

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In A Midsummer Night's Dream, what is it about the Indian boy that causes Oberon and Titiana to quarrel? 

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luannw | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Senior Educator

Posted November 14, 2007 at 8:05 PM (Answer #1)

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The boy is the offspring of one of Titania's handmaidens that she was very fond of.  The handmaiden died because she was mortal and Titania is rearing the boy for the sake of this handmaiden.  Oberon is jealous of the boy because he thinks the boy is receiving too much of Titania's attention and that he, Oberon, isn't receiving enough of it.

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amy-lepore | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted November 14, 2007 at 10:09 PM (Answer #2)

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Oberon steals the boy from Titania, and she wants him back due the very circumstances very well written about in the above answer.

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lbarbieri | High School Teacher | eNoter

Posted February 10, 2008 at 7:12 AM (Answer #3)

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The Indian boy is the child of a woman who was devoted to Titania. She died during childbirth and Titania vowed to take care of the child. Oberon wants the child for his own personal use, as a page boy. Titania wants a better life for the child, hence their arguments.

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Wiggin42 | Student, Grade 11 | Valedictorian

Posted March 23, 2014 at 1:44 AM (Answer #4)

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Titania and Oberon quarrel over the changeling boy because they both want the boy for very different reasons. 

Puck reveals to us in Act I: 

Puck: And jealous Oberon would have the child. Knight of his train to trace the forests wild.

Oberon wants the boy to be basically his henchman. 

Meanwhile, Titania has motherly love for the changeling boy because one of the women who worship her died in childbirth and gave the boy to Titania. 

A more subtle interpretation of the text suggests that Oberon is also simply jealous of all the attention and love Titania pours out for the changeling boy.

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