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Conflict between Reason and Imagination in A Midsummer Nights Dream - Essay Example

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The paper "Conflict between Reason and Imagination in A Midsummer Night’s Dream" highlights that considering the conflict between reason and imagination, the viewers get a hint of this dramatic theme at the very start of the play, in the opening scene when Egeus informs the duke that he wishes to marry Hermia to Demetrius…
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Conflict between Reason and Imagination in A Midsummer Nights Dream

Download file to see previous pages... In the play, A Midsummer Night’s Dream Shakespeare gives way to a mythical transformation of experiences of the four lovers around which the play revolves, a scenario where loves deprived of their reason, enter into amorous bindings with the people whom they never loved and break away with people whom they actually loved. In fact, Shakespeare goes one step further to accentuate the conflict between reason and imagination in this play by making the main characters enter into a discussion and a debate where they try to grasp the limitations of the mind’s eye in comprehending and making sense of the varied cosmic experiences. Certainly, the bringing in of the supernatural element in the midsummer’s night dream fulfils and important theatrical function. As per Nostbakken, “The “lunacy” or lunar madness of the lovers in the woods in A Midsummer Night’s Dream depicts a circumstance in which imagination or “fantasy” has achieved the upper hand, and reason, its opposite, has lost control (Nostbakken 98).” The craftsmanship of Shakespeare in A Midsummer’s Night’s Dream is not inherent in giving way to a plot that rests on the conflict between reason and imagination, but rather on contriving a dramatical experience where the reason and imagination while trying to supersede each other, actually end up coalescing together to give way to an enchanting theme. Shakespeare’s trick of creating a pristine forest inhabited by fairies and lovers in chase, a magical potion that is powerful enough to wrought out love at first sight, a comic character like Puck, part donkey and part man, seem to be almost as real as the real world in the play ruled over by a duke who is soon going to marry an Amazon queen and strongly holds that only a manner of thinking called reason enables the man to grasp the truth inherent in things. Harold Bloom aptly grasps this fact by believing that, “The playwright drives home his point in the final scene... (When) couples... make their way to bed thinking that reality reins again, the stage fills with all those fairies which Shakespeare’s imagination created to embody his vision of the beneficent but tricky forces at work in nature, just beyond the range of the daylight sight (Bloom 52).” In that context, it would be really amazing to analyze the interplay of reason and imagination in the play in the light of the varied scenes and actions. Considering the conflict between reason and imagination, the viewers get a hint of this dramatic theme at the very start of the play, in the opening scene when Egeus informs the duke that he wishes to marry Hermia to Demetrius, his logical choice, while Hermia intends to marry Lysander, while going contrary to the dictates of reason and common sense.  ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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