Sonnet 18 Questions and Answers
by William Shakespeare

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Please analyze the dramatic situation in Shakespeare's Sonnet 18.

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A dramatic situation is defined as one in which the  characters of a story are in engaged in conflicts of one sort or another and these characters and conflicts interest and compel the reader's attention. Carlo Gozzi and, later, Georges Polti identified 36 types of literary conflicts. Some of the classic types of conflicts are:
Human against Human
Human against Nature
Human against Self (inner conflicts)
Human against Supernatural
Human against Society
Human against Fate (or Destiny)
Human against Machine

So, a dramatic situation embroils one or more sympathetic (i.e., readily sympathized with) characters into one or more conflicts against themselves or against external forces.

Shakespeare's Sonnet 18 is a...

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epollock | Student
A possible dramatic situation is that the speaker has been challenged by his lady to develop an elaborate comparison, and the poem is his response. He then is speaking directly to her. It is possible that laughter might be sought early in the poem because the speaker is demonstrating his ingenuity. However, the poem grows more thoughtful and contemplative as it develops. The concluding words of line 8, for example, speak of “nature’s changing course,” and Death intrudes upon the argument in line 11. What begins as a virtuoso piece therefore becomes a sober discussion of the inevitability of death.