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Literature/Shakespeare Comparison of themes

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Question
Hi,
I was just wondering if the plays Titus Andronicus and Romeo and Juliet when comparing them to each other have a theme in common.

In the same way, i am just wondering if the plays Titus Andronicus and Macbeth have a theme in common between them both.

Any help or ideas would be greatly appreciated.

Answer
Hi Nick,

Well, all three plays are tragedies, meaning that they describe how things go seriously downhill for the main characters, who all come to violent deaths. Of course, several of them (R+J and Titus) commit suicide. But in each play, there are very different reasons for things going the way they do.

I suppose a common theme for Titus Andronicus and Romeo and Juliet might be family. R+J's circumstances are entirely dependent on their family situation, and Titus Andronicus is also a family-oriented drama, where Titus first loses most of his sons to war, and then in the ensuing power politics of his triumphant return to Rome has several more of his children killed and mutilated. The trauma and the disgrace are so ruinous that he even ends up killing his own (raped) daughter because neither he nor she can bear the shame of living on.

As for Titus Andronicus and Macbeth, a common theme could be the violent life of the warrior. Both Macbeth and Titus are great warriors, who win great battles, and who must deal with the violent consequences that achieving all these victories and all this power bring with them. And it turns out to be a lot more trouble than it was worth, leading only to disaster.

Hope this helped!
- Tue Sorensen

Literature

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Tue Sorensen

Expertise

I am an authority on the complete works of Shakespeare, and can answer any questions relating to his plays, poetry and life. I specialize in interpretation, double-meanings and translation into modern language.

Experience

I was a top-rated Allexperts expert on this same subject several years ago.

Organizations
Former member of the Danish Shakespeare Society, as well as an active participant in the scholarly SHAKSPER mailing list.

Education/Credentials
Three years of studying English literature at the University of Aarhus, Denmark

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