In Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing, how does Beatrice change from the beginning to the end? Her attitude toward love, her attitude as a whole, etc.

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

Beatrice changes dramatically over the course of Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing. At the beginning of the play, she is witty, intelligent, independent, and unconventional. In a way, she poses a challenge to the gender conventions of the period, being domineering rather than submissive and strong rather than weak. In certain ways, she echoes the strength of Queen Elizabeth I, one of the best and most successful monarchs in English history. While Elizabeth I, by virtue of her unique position in society was able to maintain her power and independence as a virgin queen, Beatrice is subdued by Benedick in the play and by the end becomes much more of a conventional woman of the period.

Beatrice's cynical attitude about love is central to her strength at the opening of the play and her resistance of Benedick a key to her independence. Her acceptance of the ideology of love allows Benedick to triumph in their squabbling and subdue her from her role as independent woman to dependent wife....

(The entire section contains 3 answers and 555 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now

Start your 48-hour free trial to unlock this answer and thousands more. Enjoy eNotes ad-free and cancel anytime.

Start your 48-Hour Free Trial
Approved by eNotes Editorial Team