Romeo and Juliet is a well versed story with beautiful meaning. Shakespeare was a very famous writer and still is his stories are well enjoyed by many. But, Romeo and Juliet should be a book for older age groups since teenagers shouldn’t be exposed to such violence and sexual attraction while learning in school. The story also contemplates suicide a lot which can trigger people. Although the book is great, I don’t think high school students should learn about and read it. So how is love presented in romeo and juliet ?
Romeo and Juliet displays inappropriate content which resonates to the vulnerability of teenage minds. It’s understood that teenagers engage in other activities where they learn similar vulgar behavior shown in Romeo and Juliet but; Learning the book at school gives teens a safer feeling/excuse to follow these actions (in the book) since it is a part of the “school/education curriculum”. Teenagers are open to try whatever ideas are given because they are growing and developing to become more independent. During, high school years it is the time where teens feel obligated to experience and do anything especially under the societal influence. The story exposes violence and gore for example there are fights and killings. During Mercutio’s death while alive, cursing the Capulets: “A plague o’ both your houses”. This is a good quote that provokes violence because Tybalt had stabbed Mercutio and before dying and Mercutio curses both the Capulets and the Montagues. This was a good scene there should be nothing changed about it but for high school it’s a bit violent and inappropriate it can give people ideas. Especially since…” His fault concludes but what the law should end, The life of Tybalt. And for that offence immediately we do exile him hence.”-Prince . This was after it was found out Romeo had killed Tybalt and although it is only only a book/play the process went by fast and Romeo was only exiled from Verona. It’s understanded this is only a non-fiction story but, people really do believe anything and feed off of any information to give them hope. The storys violence goes to great lengths (death) and reading this in school would show that violence and death is okay.
Furthermore, I big thing that applies to teenagers are “raging hormones” people start get intimate with others or want to in high school. As stated previously young teenage minds are vulnerable especially when it comes to intimacy and attraction. Romeo and Juliet is a love story between a 14 year old and a 17 year old and that is the age of high school students (who are reading it). Therefore, it can be processed as a consent to experience the same things that Romeo and Juliet do in the book/movie. They easily fall in love, already plan to marry at such a young age, makeout and have intercorse. Which is already what most teenagers do but, learning it in school is especially not only an odd educational subject. Because, if you’re learning it in school, why can’t you do it in real life, right? Despite the kind words Romeo speaks while confessing his love to Juliet. He was in love with Rosaline before Juliet.” You are a lover. Borrow Cupid’s wings and soar with them above a common bound” -Benvolio. Rosaline was enable to give him what he wanted which was her chastity which is the “refraining from extramarital, or especially from all, sexual intercourse.” Which could be said that her chastity was a reason that then helped, Romeo to quickly move onto Juliet. This kind of destroys the “love at first sight” since he had just loved someone right before Juliet. “My lips, two blushing pilgrims, ready stand. To smooth that rough touch with s tender kiss”.-Romeo. This quote was when Romeo and Juliet first met and he was already implying to kiss her (as they did end up doing in this scene). Romeo and Juliet moved very quickly in there relationship and were intimate within first meeting each other. The whole “moving fast” doesn’t teach teenagers to respect and value themselves. It’s saying to jump right into something which can hurt many people since, reality alters from the Romeo and Juliet “fairytale”.
A big subject that is brought up a lot in Romeo and Juliet is suicide and contemplating death. Suicide is the second leading cause of death for ages 10-24 (teenagers and young adults). Did you know? Teenagers and young adults die from suicide than from AIDS, cancer, pneumonia, influenza and lung disease combined. In our nation each day an average of 3,045 suicide attempts are made per day. Romeo and Juliet talks about suicide over 18 times (in counting) like it means nothing. The characters don’t value their life as much as they should and this can easily be a trigger since high school is the most common time where negative thoughts about life and suicide are made. For example. When Juliet’s plan to be with Romeo fails she immediately stabs herself with a “happy dagger. It is considered “happy” because it reunites her with her love this scene was very influential in a negative way and wouldn’t help student who are going through mental health issues even if it’s just stress. ”Unless thou tell me how I may prevent it. If in thy wisdom thou canst give no help, Do thou but call my resolution wise,And with this knife I’ll help it presently.”-Juliet . Here Juliet threatens to kill herself unless she gets her way from Friar Lawrence. She is holding Friar Lawrence responsible of what would be her death if he doesn’t help her scheme (since he is wise and smart and can give good advice) to get her love back (Romeo). As already stated the characters in the story especially Romeo and Juliet don’t value their life. I understand it is only because they want to be with each other which is a beautiful concept of love in the story but, other people (like the readers in high school)could easily take it literally and the all talk of suicide can cause controversy and commotion in the school. “Arms, take your last embrace. And, lips, O, you The doors of breath, seal with a righteous kiss A dateless bargain to engrossing death.” -Romeo. Most teenagers are very vulnerable, sensitive and fragile already going through enough stress they then need to take the time to get emotionally attached while reading one of Shakespeare’s plays. Reading his this beautiful and dramatic love story can really hurt certain people in different ways since it has so much going on.
In conclusion, I think Shakespeare was a well thought and important writer who was very talented. Despite his talent I don’t think Romeo and Juliet is meant to be for the highschool age group. This is because all the confusing controversy and vulgar actions displayed in the play (it can be emotional and confusing for young people). Writers with talent are talented because they have a great way with words and Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet has a captivating touch to it that is both intriguing and inappropriate. As I said, it’s sexual, vulgar/violent and can cause triggers and ideas because of the suicide implications. I think in the era where it was created the story would have been good for the age groups but just not for teenagers now.