What are some examples of how Romeo and Juliet still says something about our lives today, even though Shakespeare lived and wrote his plays in the 16th century? 

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litteacher8 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In movies and popular culture there are constant references to Romeo and Juliet.  They are the quintessential lovers, caught up in circumstances beyond their control, who never gave up on each other.  Even though the society we live in today is less restrictive, there are plenty of examples of young people whose parents do not want them to get together.

Love is universal.  Young people do not feel any less passionate and tortured today than they did back then.  What lover has not felt like Romeo, when he describes love?

O heavy lightness! serious vanity!
Misshapen chaos of well-seeming forms!
Feather of lead, bright smoke, cold fire, sick health!
Still-waking sleep, that is not what it is!
This love feel I, that feel no love in this.(180)
Dost thou not laugh? (Act 1, Scene 1)

In modern times, we often feel isolated from each other and from our emotions.  We are separated by social class and family ties, just as these two were.  All in all, there is not much different if you are a member of a gang or a wealthy family.  Your family still expects to have an influence over you, and you might feel torn.