As You Like It (Bloom's Shakespeare Through the Ages) by Sterling Professor of the Humanities Harold Bloom, Pamela

By Sterling Professor of the Humanities Harold Bloom, Pamela Loos

Shakespeare's romantic comedy, As you're keen on It units up a couple of dualities, exposing the advanced relationships that exist among romance and realism, nobleman and commoner, and female and male. This learn consultant incorporates a number of feedback during the centuries on As you love It.

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Additional info for As You Like It (Bloom's Shakespeare Through the Ages)

Sample text

Nearly all of the behavior that Rosalind warns of is compared to that of animals. In short, it is behavior that would naturally occur in a wild animal—which man, especially man who has not lived in the country, must feel helpless to control. When Rosalind is done with her long list of what she will do when married, Orlando asks if this is actually what his Rosalind will do. In other words, he doubts that his love would act this way. Even more interestingly, his question shows that he does not blindly stay under the spell of Rosalind playing the role of his lover.

It is not what is done, but what is said, that claims our attention. Nursed in solitude, “under the shade of melancholy boughs,” the imagination grows soft and delicate, and the wit runs riot in idleness, like a spoiled child, that is never sent to school. Caprice and fancy reign and revel here, and stern necessity is banished to the court. The mild sentiments of humanity are strengthened with thought and leisure; the echo of the cares and noise of the world strikes upon the ear of those “who have felt them knowingly,” softened by time and distance.

In it Jaques envisions man as a pawn in a drama over which he has no control. Man enters (is born) and exits (dies) at his appointed times and in between plays several horrid parts as he ages and progresses through his life span. Initially, he is a baby who must be taken care of, weak and ill in a nurse’s arms. Then he is an unhappy child, moving along at a snail’s pace on his way to school each day because of his great distaste for it. He eventually becomes a lover, which one might think a fortunate turn of events, yet here Jaques speaks of the lover’s sad and foolish love song, with no mention of that love being returned.

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