Discuss Shakespeare’s treatment of love in “As You Like It

  • Comment on the varieties of love

Discuss Shakespeare’s treatment of love in “As You Like It”

The play ‘‘As You Like It’’ (1600) was created by William Shakespeare (1564-1616). The play represents passionate love on the one hand, as well as disguised, blind, and even manipulated love.  In the play, love is illustrated essentially by eight characters who all marry at the end of the play.

Types of Love

William Shakespeare’s different types of love are displayed in the play among them Romantic love and courtly love, immoral love, sexual love, Sisterly and brotherly love Fatherly love Unrequited love.

Romantic and Courtly Love

Relationship between Rosalind and Orlando is best example of romantic love. The way in which they meet and fall in love is traditional. It is a gentlemanly love but they have to overcome many obstacles to get each other. Besides, love between Touchstone and Audrey is hardly romantic. They are so called romantic lovers. Besides, the way Rosalind cures Orlando’s love is very romantic. When Orlando meets Rosalind in the forest of Arden and informs Ganymede, actually Rosalind that he has a love disease. Hearing it Rosalind creates a love of playful intrigue and plays the role of doctor to cure Orlando’s love disease.  She says to him that she can solve the problem of love. In fact, Rosalind wants to please herself and wants to test Orlando’s depth of love for her but she tries to believe Orlando that it will be a cure for his lovesickness.  As romantic beloved Rosalind tests Orlando’s love for her and enjoys the wooing side of romantic love though she is aware and realistic. This incidence very much romantic

Bawdy Sexual Love

Touchstone and Audrey act as a foil to Rosalind and Orlando’s characters. They are cynical about romantic love and their relationship is based on the physical side of love. The audience is given the opportunity to decide which kind of love is more honest. Courtly love could be seen as superficial, based on manners and appearance. On the other hand, bawdy love which is presented as cynical a story or joke and related to sex but truthfully presented.

Sisterly and Brotherly Love

Relation between Celia and Rosalind is clearly evident of Sisterly and Brotherly Love.  when Rosalind is banished from royal court by her uncle duke Frederic, Celia also join  with Rosalind and goes to in the forest and support each other unconditionally though they are not actually sister of same parent.

Brotherly love

As You Like It begins with lacking brotherly love. here Oliver hates his brother Orlando and wants him dead. Duke Frederick exiled his brother Duke Senior and usurped his dukedom. but in the last part of the play, they both show their brotherly love.

Fatherly Love

Duke Frederick loves his daughter Celia. He has allowed Rosalind to stay in court because Celia loves Rosalind. He wants to banish Rosalind for the betterment of his daughter Celia.  Because he believes that Rosalind overshadows his own daughter her more beautiful. Celia rejects her father’s attempts at loyalty and leaves him to join Rosalind in the forest. His love is somewhat unrequited due to his wrongdoing. Duke Senior loves Rosalind but fails to recognize her when she is in disguise as Ganymede but he has a deep love for his daughter.

Unrequited Love

Unrequited love is love in which there is no reward given or taken. Duke Frederick’s love for his daughter. duke senior love for his daughter, Rosalind, and Celia’s love for each other, all are examples of unrequited. Among the main characters love between Silvius and Phebe and Phebe and Ganymede is another example of selfless love. Silvius follows Phoebe around like a love-sick puppy and she scorns him, but though she scorns him he loves her more. Silvius says:

“Sweet Phebe, do not scorn me, do not, Phebe.

Say that you love me not, but say not so

In bitterness.”

Besides, the love between Celia and Oliver is also an example of romantic love.  Rosalind acts with Orlando as Ganymede and Orlando’s boyish-like attitude is unexpected. This love is a hint of homosexuality.

Conclusion: There are many relationships in “As You Like It”. Shakespeare through the treatment of love gives us a message that though love is an essential part of our life we should not use it here and there.

Leave a Reply

error: Sorry !!