A Midsummer Night's Dream
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Aren't midsummer night dreams the worst? You wake up all sweaty and gross, and for a minute there, you can't even remember where you are. And also, your upper half is a donkey? Yep, that's what happens in Shakespeare's play A Midsummer Night's Dream.
|Author||Shakespeare - William Shakespeare|
|British Literature||17th-Century British Literature|
|Themes||Art and Culture|
Foolishness and Folly
Man and the Natural World
Versions of Reality
Someone must be to blame for all this trouble, right? Let's take a good look at the suspects.
First on the scene is Duke Theseus. He just pillaged a foreign country and kidnapped a
hot girl to marry.
Way to rule a kingdom, buddy. Next possible perpetrator? Egeus.
He's an angry dad who likes things the way they’ve always been and doesn’t like people
marrying who they want to marry. Namely… his daughter Hermia.
But instead of his usual routine of calling into Dr. Laura’s radio show, he decides
to ask the duke to kill his daughter for punishment.
The duke, feeling that her father’s reaction is a bit extreme, offers Hermia the alternative
of becoming a nun for the rest of her life.
Are we surprised his daughter runs away? Not convinced it's either of those guys? Well,
how about the lovers?
Sure, they look innocent, but these hooligans break the law in the name of love, and can’t
even decide who they’re in love with!
Exhibit A is a chart of their love. “Hermia loves Lysander but not Demetrius,
who loves Hermia.
Helena loves Detemtrius who doesn’t love her. Then he does… so does Lysander, which
makes Hermia furious with Helena.
Finally Hermia gets with Lysander and Helena with Demetrius and everyone’s in love.”
Could the trouble have been caused by these criminals who were hitting the love potion
a little too hard? Our fourth suspect is the fairy king Oberon.
He really wants to fight his ex-lover Titania for an Indian child they somehow acquired.
He’s so jealous that he makes her fall in love with a donkey. And he uses his minion
Puck to make the lovers fall in love with the wrong people. For fun.
Sounds like someone’s not comfortable with their masculinity.
We’re still wondering why nobody is concerned that he kidnapped a little kid? Could he be
the one to blame? Last on the list is Puck: professional trickster.
When the mob rejected his application, he went to work for Oberon.
Unfortunately, he’s not very good at following directions. Or shaving his legs.
Could he be the culprit… sneaking love potions into unsuspecting lovers and turning men into
donkeys? There are a lot of choices, but it’s hard
to nail this mess on just one criminal…