I need to write an essay about why should we study Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare. This is a short persuasive essay and I am unsure on how to write it. I have been thinking about covering major themes in Romeo and Juliet themes such as fate, love and revenge.  

Expert Answers info

Lynnette Wofford eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2011

write6,976 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, History, and Business

If your assignment is to write a short essay about why we should study Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare, your instructor probably wants you to focus on that question, namely why the play should be studied, rather than summarizing the themes of the play. Essentially, your assignment is trying to encourage you to think through what you learn from reading the play.

The first reason you might want to discuss is cultural diversity. Since you live in the twenty-first century, reading a play written 500 years ago gives you an opportunity to explore cultural assumptions and perspectives quite different to ours, and to learn the historical background to modern culture.

The next reason to read the play is the language. Shakespeare's language uses a very extensive vocabulary, complex syntax, and many figures of speech. By reading it, you expand your vocabulary and syntactic attention span, and can learn, via imitation, something about the use of figurative language.

Finally, on a thematic level, the two young lovers in the play are making important relationship decisions. As you read the play and discuss it with your classmates, you have the opportunity to think through how emotional relationships work, benefiting from the vicarious knowledge you gain. 

Further Reading:

check Approved by eNotes Editorial

katedavisnotary | Student

This timeless story exemplifies how petty long-time hatred between two families destroys the people each family loves most- - Juliet Capulet and Romeo Montague. Also important is the well-intended --but misguided- - intervention of the friar who marries them without their families' knowledge or consent.