He doesn't try to empathise with Romeo about his love for Rosaline, 'If love be rough with you, you be rough with love.' He is very opinionated 'dreamers often lie.' Aswell as his hostility towards love it branches out towards women. He lists Rosaline's body parts in a crude monologue using the poetry technique blazon. 'I conjure thee by Rosaline's bright eyes, by her high forehead and her scarlet lip.'
Christina Rossetti’s Goblin Market is an open-ended story with ideas of femininity, temptation, sin, and redemption, and critics and readers seem to have a difficult time pinpointing a satisfying theme. However, the poem’s intended audience is perhaps even more widely debated. Some argue that it is a children’s story rich with lessons of good morals. It teaches the dangers of giving in to temptation, while also showing the importance of loving relationships. On the other hand, it is hard to ignore the erotic language and sensual imagery that are evident throughout the text.
Humour at the expense of women is also prominent in ‘Much Ado’ through the use of ‘vulgar’ pre-marriage language, favoured by Margret – another arguably unconventional woman of the Elizabethan society, who participates in sex outside of wedlock purely for pleasure, creating controversy and humour. “Seventy-five percent of Shakespearian plays have oaths they can’t keep” correctly states Paul McDonald. This regular form feature of Shakespearian comedies generates humour at the expense of women in ‘Much Ado’; in the form of Beatrice ironically being ‘manoeuvred into wedlock despite proclaimed repugnance for matrimony’: Beatrice: “Adam’s sons are my brethren, and truly, I hold it a sin to match in my kinred”. Beatrice breaks her oath of “remaining a wild, unconventional woman who denounces marriage” by instead becoming a product of proper Elizabethan social convention - Beatrice: “It were as possible for me to say I loved nothing so well as you”. This submission to the patriarchal society is also a common form feature of
The characters’ likings change in the play is troubling, where Lysander is intensely in love with Hermia at first and with Helena at another point. “Transparent Helena! Nature shows art that through thy bosom makes me see thy heart” (Shakespeare and Foakes Act II). The aim of the play is not to observe the nature of true love but reasonably to mock misunderstandings that love brings. Lysander, Hermia, Demetrius and Helena are destined not to be romantic classics, but somewhat sympathetic figures thrown into perplexing situations of romantic farce.
Unlike most of the other sonnets which are full of love and praise, Shakespeare’s Sonnet 138 is about a less than perfect relationship which is based on lies and is complicated and difficult, yet “both speakers practice, again and again, a self-deceptive illusion, compulsively complying with it rather than giving it up” (Vendler 294). They continue to flatter each other for the sake of their sexual needs and the persona simply ignores his mistress’s adultery. When we look at the first two lines of the first quatrain, we see that there is a mutual deception. The persona complains that when his lover swears that she is true and faithful to him, he believes her but at the same time knows that she is lying. It is a paradoxical situation and it gets more paradoxical when we see that Shakespeare’s use of the word ‘lie’ perhaps is not a coincidence, as it has both meanings which suit the themes in the sonnet.
In both stories we have a love triangle with a woman which is unobtainable and two men that fight over her. Absolon uses courtly language to try to get Alisoun to bed, another tie in to the Knight’s Tale. The tale ends at the end of a hot poker instead of a sword. In the Miller’s tale the love triangle is not much more than a lust triangle, and by doing this Chaucer suggests that what is really going on in both genres is the lust for sex. An example where the Knight’s tale is parodied is the part where Absolon tries to seduce Alisoun while John is out of town: “And softe he cogheth with a semi-soun— ‘What do ye, hony-comb, swete Alisoun?
Rossetti enters ‘no man’s land’ by switching the role of masculinity and femininity in “Goblin Market”, at the same time probing into unmentionable, taboo topics. Margaret Homans, in her essay Syllables of Velvet, discusses how topics of sexuality and love through genres such as love lyrics are often seen through the eyes of the masculine figure while the female is portrayed as submissive in her position as the silent love interest. On page three she points out the portrayal of “I” and the subject as purely male; this correlates to Lacan’s claims that the phallus signifies the meaning and dominancy. Rossetti completely capsizes these norms in “Goblin Market” by projecting the opposite. The poem explores women and the issues of sexuality and desire; Laura represents what would normally be the masculine figure that vies for affection from his desire.
The fact he also invited her, suggests irony in his characterization because he is showing her where she will end up. Marqui, shows her the gallery of the beautiful women, in order to show her what she was getting her self into, therefor showing she was not forced and she went in with her own choice. Page 11: “The lilies I always associate with him; that are white and stain you.” Imagery of the lilies' apparent purity suggests the narrator's innocence and the Marquis's sexual corruption. Lilies are traditionally a symbol of chastity and virtue; to the narrator, however, they are 'funereal', associated with death. Flowers suggest a link to the fairy-tale context, such as the rose in 'Beauty and the Beast'.
However I believe that beneath this layer of “properness” there is the still the raw sexuality of our nature. If you look at romance novels you will find that women read about and find pleasure in some of the most heinous fantasies. Men on the other hand watch porn; both are manifestations of real, repressed desire. Additionally you have internet dating, face-booking, tweeting and other such impersonal ways of meeting a mate. It’s increasingly hard for people to display their true nature without an interface, or a gimmick because instances where one does can put that person at risk socially.
In Hero and Leander there are many contrasting attitudes to the concept of erotic love. The two manners toward erotic love are as such: One is to stress on the physical act of sex. The other is the defiance to erotic love and preference toward virginity. At first glance Leander seems to favour the former and tries to promote physical love, but throughout the text he shows a kind of humorous naïve-ness. Hero, who is a nun and supports chastity, in general, can be seen being quite forward.