Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet Compared to Teenage Love in Today’s Society

While several centuries have passed since the publication of the tale of Romeo and Juliet, it appears that even in today’s world, love has preserved the same themes as those observed centuries ago. The plot of Romeo and Juliet revolves around the two families who profoundly despise each other. The play commences with Montague and Capulet, who are engaged in a street fight until the Prince of Verona imposes that any deviation from peace would result in death penalty. Capulet is sent a proposal for his daughter, Juliet by Count Paris for marriage yet Capulet refuses the proposal as she is too young. Capulet invites Paris to the Capulet ball and requests him to delay the marriage proposal for a few years. In the meantime, Romeo meets Juliet at the Capulet ball and falls in love with her. In the famous ‘balcony scene’, Juliet expresses her love to Romeo who claims to have the same feelings for her. They decide to be married despite the animosity that exists between their families. The subsequent day, they are secretly married with the help of Friar Laurence, who wishes to unite the two families. Later, when Juliet requests to delay the marriage proposal by Capulet, she is rejected by her mother. She then drinks a drug potion that would put her in a stage of coma for some time, while Friar Laurence assures her Romeo would be informed of the plan. However, the message is not received by Romeo, who upon receiving news of Juliet’s death visits her grave and meets Paris there. In rage, he kills Paris and drinks the poison himself. Upon the awakening of Juliet, she finds the dead Romeo by her side and ends her life with his dagger. Once the families arrive, they are reconciled by the romantic yet tragic deaths of their children. From the plot, it can be concluded that the themes of the story of Romeo and Juliet revolve around love. More specifically, the story is based on the power of love, and love being a cause for violence. Moreover, the story depicts the struggle of individuals against the society. In the end, the story of Romeo and Juliet portrays that fate is inevitable, like being carved in stone. In accordance with these themes and references that will be presented in the following essay, it can be justified that young, teenage love stories of today are quite similar to the classic love stories such as Romeo and Juliet. The forcefulness and power of love, which often makes love, appear to some as a strong belief, almost like a religion and excels all metaphors. Its strength cannot be described in mere words and therefore, it overpowers the lovers, which then believe in themselves as individuals struggling against the laws of society (Cahn 1996). For instance, Romeo and Juliet, after confessing their feelings to each other, were plotting a plan to run away and secretly be wed. This is because they were aware that their families’ enmity would certainly result in a disapproval of their relationship. Hence, they were in it on their own and decided to be in charge of their own lives and its decisions. Similarly, there are constant reports of teenagers in love running away because of their parent’s disapproval of the relationship. For example, the recent case of Miami Palmetto High School students, Nicole and Jackson, strongly reflects the theme of fighting against the society and lovers deciding to be together without parental influence (Sydney Morning Herald 2011). In the news report, these run-away