Discuss the relationships between parents and children in Romeo and Juliet. How do Romeo and Juliet interact with their parents? Are they rebellious, in the modern sense? How do their parents feel about them?

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The relationship between parents and children in Romeo and Juliet tends to be quite fraught. In those days, parents were expected to rule their children with a rod of iron and insist on absolute, unconditional obedience at all times. This was especially true of aristocratic families, such as the Montagues and the Capulets.

In keeping with ancient tradition, both Romeo and Juliet will be expected to acquiesce to marriages arranged for them by their families. In Juliet's case, her parents have chosen the worthy but somewhat drippy Paris as her future husband. Juliet rebels and refuses to go along with her parents' plans, much to their horror. In a furious tirade, Lord Capulet effectively disowns his daughter, accusing her of rank ingratitude for all that he's done for her.

Though Capulet's outburst may seem harsh, it's important to understand the social and historical context here. In those days, aristocratic marriages were more like strategic political alliances than love matches. The personal...

(The entire section contains 2 answers and 1030 words.)

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