Rosalind and Celia
Free Essay: As You Like It - Rosalind and Celia A search for feminist criticism on William These varyingly discuss Rosalind in relation to gender issues, romantic She notes the contrast between the "love, trust and warmth of their woman's. Like all of Shakespeare's comedies, As You Like It begins with a serious As we can see here, Oliver, has taken a much tighter position with Orlando Celia again comes to Rosalind's rescue stating that she will accompany her into exile. . Before the wedding is to take place Hymen, the god of marriage, sings a song. Celia's love for Oliver is sudden, intense and In this connection, it should be remembered that love in.
No copy of it in Quarto exists, for the play is mentioned by the printers of the First Folio among those which "are not formerly entered to other men. External evidence[ edit ] As You Like It was entered into the Register of the Stationers' Company on 4 August as a work which was "to be stayed", i. This evidence implies that the play was in existence in some shape or other before It seems likely this play was written aftersince Francis Meres did not mention it in his Palladis Tamia.
Although twelve plays are listed in Palladis Tamia, it was an incomplete inventory of Shakespeare's plays to that date The new Globe Theatre opened some time in the summer ofand tradition has it that the new playhouse's motto was Totus mundus agit histrionem—"all the Globe's a stage"—an echo of Jaques' famous line "All the world's a stage" II. Internal evidence[ edit ] In Act III, vi, Phebe refers to the famous line "Whoever loved that loved not at first sight" taken from Marlowe's Hero and Leanderwhich was published in It is suggested in Michael Wood 's In Search of Shakespeare that the words of Touchstone, "When a man's verses cannot be understood, nor a man's good wit seconded with the forward child understanding, it strikes a man more dead than a great reckoning in a little room", allude to Marlowe's assassination.
According to the inquest into his death, Marlowe had been killed in a brawl following an argument over the "reckoning" of a bill in a room in a house in Deptford, owned by the widow Eleanor Bull in The posthumous publication of Hero and Leander would have revived interest in his work and the circumstances of his death. These words in Act IV, i, in Rosalind's speech, "I will weep for nothing, like Diana in the fountain", may refer to an Alabaster image of Diana which was set up in Cheapside in However, it should be remembered Diana is mentioned by Shakespeare in at least ten other plays, and is often depicted in myth and art as at her bath.
Certain anachronisms exist as well, such as the minor character Sir Oliver Martext's possible reference to the Marprelate Controversy which transpired between and On the basis of these references, it seems that As You Like It may have been composed in —, but it remains impossible to say with any certainty.
Analysis and criticism[ edit ] Rosalind by Robert Walker Macbeth Though the play is consistently one of Shakespeare's most frequently performed comedies, scholars have long disputed over its merits.
Shaw liked to think that Shakespeare wrote the play as a mere crowdpleaserand signalled his own middling opinion of the work by calling it As You Like It — as if the playwright did not agree. Tolstoy objected to the immorality of the characters and Touchstone's constant clowning.
Other critics have found great literary value in the work. Harold Bloom has written that Rosalind is among Shakespeare's greatest and most fully realised female characters. The elaborate gender reversals in the story are of particular interest to modern critics interested in gender studies.
Through four acts of the play, Rosalind, who in Shakespeare's day would have been played by a boy, finds it necessary to disguise herself as a boy, whereupon the rustic Phebe, also played by a boy, becomes infatuated with this " Ganymede ", a name with homoerotic overtones. In fact, the epilogue, spoken by Rosalind to the audience, states rather explicitly that she or at least the actor playing her is not a woman. In several scenes, "Ganymede" impersonates Rosalind' so a boy actor would have been playing a girl disguised as a boy impersonating a girl.
Setting[ edit ] An etching of the Forest of Arden, created by John Macpherson for a series by Frederick Gard Fleay Arden is the name of a forest located close to Shakespeare's home town of Stratford-upon-Avonbut Shakespeare probably had in mind the French Arden Wood, featured in Orlando Innamoratoespecially since the two Orlando epics, Orlando Innamorato and Orlando Furiosohave other connections with the play.
In the Orlando mythos, Arden Wood is the location of Merlin's Fountain, a magic fountain causing anyone who drinks from it to fall out of love.Wendy Harrell - Celia and Rosalind from As You Like It
The Oxford Shakespeare edition rationalises the confusion between the two Ardens by assuming that "Arden" is an anglicisation of the forested Ardennes region of France, where Lodge set his tale  and alters the spelling to reflect this. Other editions keep Shakespeare's "Arden" spelling, since it can be argued that the pastoral mode depicts a fantastical world in which geographical details are irrelevant. The Arden edition of Shakespeare makes the suggestion that the name "Arden" comes from a combination of the classical region of Arcadia and the biblical garden of Edenas there is a strong interplay of classical and Christian belief systems and philosophies within the play.
Following the tradition of a romantic comedy, As You Like It is a tale of love manifested in its varied forms. In many of the love-stories, it is love at first sight.
Gloucester is too meek to offer the kind of loyal support which the four lords extend to Senior until it is too late for him to be of real help. Not only are the bonds of family loyalty broken but even the deep emotional bonds between father and child. Edgar too is forced out onto the heath in hiding. Once evil has been activated, they all respond to the vibration, and at least initially, life supports them. Yet the mechanism by which evil is finally defeated in King Lear closely parallels the restoration of justice in As You Like It, because, regardless of the intensity or direction of the forces involved, life follows the same laws at all levels of its expression.
These principles can be seen in the subsequent events which move towards resolution. In fact, Charles has come to warn Oliver of the danger to Orlando if he joins the combat. Your brother is but young and tender; and, for your love, I would loathe to foil him, as I must, for my own honour, if he come in; therefore out of my love to you, I came hither to acquaint you withal, that either you might stay him from his intendment, or brook such disgrace well as he shall run into, in that it is a thing of his own search, and altogether against my will.
Frederick also expresses concern for Orlando and sends Celia and Rosalind to convince him not to fight. Speak to him, ladies; see if you can move him. As a result of his act, Rosalind and Orlando meet and fall in love, Orlando is strengthened by her support, and he easily defeats Charles.
Having taken power by violating laws of conscience and society, he allows conscience to express here to the detriment of his sovereignty.
Later his conscience rises to fully reverse his act of usurpation. When Orlando and Oliver first came to blows, it was the servant Adam who tried to calm them down and save Oliver from harm.
Oliver responded by calling him old dog. After Charles lost the match, Oliver decides on another plan against Orlando. It is the offended Adam who reveals the plot to Orlando and urges him to escape.
Hath heard your praises; and this night he means To burn the lodging where you use to lie, and you within it.
Had he even attempted an act so much in violation of the bonds between brothers, it is unlikely that Orlando could have later come to his rescue. I did not then intreat to have her stay; It was your pleasure, and your own remorse; I was too young that time to value her, But now I know her.
If she be a traitor, Why so am I: Frederick did not realise at that time the danger to his rule of retaining her, for Rosalind has not only won the heart of his daughter but the hearts of the people as well. By the time he recognises the danger, it is too late.
She is too subtle for thee; and her smoothness, Her very silence and patience, Speak to the people, and they pity her. Pronounce that sentence then, on me, my liege, I cannot live out of her company. You know my father hath no child but I, nor none is like to have; and, truly, when he dies thou shalt be his heir; for what he hath taken away from thy father perforce, I will render thee again in affection. Frederick tries to break the link between himself and Senior represented by Rosalind by sending her away, but he underestimates the positive bonds between Celia and Rosalind.
As a result Frederick loses his daughter. By the time Orlando and Adam leave for the forest, Rosalind disguised as Ganymede, Celia, and Touchstone have already arrived in Arden. O that your Highness knew my heart in this! I never loved my brother in my life. The division within himself between ambition and conscience indicates he will not retain power long. In Hamlet, the same division was present in Claudius. Though he could not bring himself to renounce power, it weakened him sufficiently to enable his defeat.
In fact, in the prayer scene when Claudius contemplates the sinfulness of his acts, he is completely vulnerable.
As You Like It
His momentary weakness attracts Hamlet who chances to find him just at the moment but, because of his own internal division, refuses to act. In King Lear the great power of the evil characters arises because there is no internal division in their nature. Goneril, Regan and Edmund act mercilessly with a complete absence of hesitation or regret. Only Edmund takes any initiative to do good by revealing the execution plot against Lear and Cordelia. But he is able to do so only after Goneril and Regan are dead and their bodies have been brought before him.
Only then the evil influence of their consciousness leaves him and he shows a capacity for human response. By punishing Oliver, he casts away from himself the one pillar of support for his own immorality. This act foreshadows his own renunciation later. So much is good entrenched in the society, that even Frederick who has committed an equally great or worse sin, despises Oliver for hating Orlando.
The atmosphere is too positive for any strong negative initiative to succeed. Frederick, too, keeps power out of the gentle goodness of Celia, Rosalind, Senior and the lords who do not rebel against his acts. When Celia leaves him, he loses the strength which issues from the goodwill of family. In King Lear, despite the frightening freedom with which the characters of evil pursue their aims, a closer look at the events and results of action will reveal the natural limitations in which evil functions and the fact that its primary capacity is for self-destruction, though it may at the same time induce considerable suffering on others.
On almost every occasion that evil forces take an active initiative, the result is a setback for their cause. Cornwall blinds Gloucester but loses his life in the process. Oswald attempts to kill Gloucester and is killed by Edgar. Acts in life succeed in the measure the initiator has the strength of consciousness required in relation to others who are effected and in relation to the general atmosphere which may either support or oppose the act.
In both King Lear and As You Like It the negative forces exceed in their acts the limits sanctioned by their strength. As a result their initiatives fall back in themselves. The forest which Oliver finds a place of grave danger, proves a land of romance for these three. The bonds of affection between Rosalind and Celia are greater than fear. That love leads them to safety and to love. Orlando and Adam also enter Arden. Leaving Adam to rest, Orlando goes in search of food and charges into the camp of Duke Senior and his lords.
His chance meeting with the Duke foreshadows his later marriage to Rosalind. Soon after, Orlando enters and meets Rosalind disguised as Ganymede. The strength of mutual affection brings them together. On two occasions she makes him promise to return by a given time and on both occasions Orlando is late. The scene now changes to the Forest Ardenne. This is a famous forest in northern France spreading into Belgium and Luxembourg and the scene of horrific fighting during both world wars of the last century.
Shakespeare's use of this forest is for far more peaceful purposes. Most editions of the play, including the First Folio, identify the forest as Arden, a smaller forest in central England near Shakespeare's birthplace. Arden is also the maiden name of Shakespeare's mother. In discussing the settings for other Shakespeare plays I comment on the ambiguous use of these settings. Particularly in his comedies, Shakespeare seems to look for a distant or removed setting where another culture or even a different world vision may be imagined.
The Tempest is an excellent example of what we might characterize as a near fairly land existence. Of course the people in these settings remain very English, and the issues they deal with are also not only human problems but often very English problems. Most of As You Like It is set in the forest which Shakespeare shapes into a pastoral as well as forest landscape.
Shakespeare does not unduly idealize the pastoral as some writers did. It is not necessarily a place of infinite abundance, natural justice, and uncontested harmony.
As You Like It | The Mother's Service Society
But it is way better than the climate of court intrigue from which our exiles have recently fled. Duke Senior, Rosalind's father, sets the tone at the beginning of Act II in his "Sweet are the uses of adversity" speech. Yes, life in the forest is without the creature comforts of the court, but it is more genuine and one feels more alive here than surrounded by the artifice of a stately palace. In this opening scene of II we see some of the common attractions of the pastoral laid out for us: It is pointed out that Orlando is also missing, thus an all points bulletin goes out for each.
His old servant, Adam, warns Orlando of that he is now on Frederick's most wanted list, urges him to flee, and says he will meet up with him later. So the stage is now set for Orlando and Rosalind to meet and continue their friendship. Of course upon arriving in Ardenne Rosalind is now Ganymede, and in Shakespeare's theater cannot be or will not be recognized by Orlando despite Rosalind's frequent and broad hints of her identity.
She and Celia accompanied by Touchstone soon meet Corin, an older shepherd and Sylvius, a youth in love. But Corin points out that all is not idyllic in this idyllic scene. The pasture is for sale and soon he and Sylvius may be without a job.
Rosalind believes money is the answer to this problem and gladly expresses her willingness to supply funds for the purchase of the pasture, cottage, and all livestock.
Where the funds are to come from is not entirely clear; but as we are in a semi-fairyland, it probably makes no difference.
We also get a glimpse of old Adam and Orlando who have now also entered the forest. And yet elsewhere we find Duke Senior with his group who have been looking for Jacques and now come upon him. Jacques expresses his desire to become a fool who can speak his mind on any matters without fear of being censored or worse by his master. Fools and clowns are nearly ubiquitous characters in Shakespeare.
We think of the fool in King Lear, the clown in Twelfth Night. There are other characters that play the roles of fools--Falstaff is a prime example.
A good fool is quick witted with an agile mind and is unafraid to humorously offend. Fools were very popular in plays during an era of pointed censorship, sickening flattery, and autocratic domination at all levels of life. Jacques is interrupted in his ruminations on foolery by a distressed and very hungry Orlando. He is cautioned that there is plenty of food in the forest, so Orlando leaves to find his servant, Adam that he might eat with Orlando.
This interruption gives Jacques the opportunity to comment on the ages of man and the stages through with a man will pass during his life. In II,7 lines is the most famous speech in As You Like It and certainly one of the most famous speeches in all of Shakespeare's works. It is not the only place where a character will reflect on life and the stage, but it is possibly the most penetrating and memorable instance. Back at court Duke Frederick is blaming Oliver for Orlando's escape and insists that Oliver find his brother.
Now that Orlando's immediate needs are satisfied he can direct all his attention to his infatuation with Rosalind. He is penning her love poems and placing them on trees where she might see them and carving his affections into the trees themselves. Touchstone's witty remarks at least partially summarize the urban response to rural life: Corin replies that the pastoral life is what it is.
What you see is what you get, and if one seeks money and means, he is in the wrong place. I like Corin's final summation: Rosalind is now seen reading the love notes scattered about the forest, and when Celia identifies the author as Orlando, Rosalind becomes very excited. Soon Orlando and Jacques wander into view and Celia and Rosalind hide behind some bushes to overhear their conversation, and it is a very strange and desultory. Jacques is his usual pessimistic and depressing self, but Orlando is able to match his wit without humoring him.
I think this is a humorous exchange, but most students are not actually holding their sides while reading it. On stage if skillfully acted this scene can be very funny.
There now follow more incidents of love making, as Elizabethans would refer to it. Orlando and Rosalind have a lengthy exchange. We next meet Silvius, a shepherd, who loves Phoebe, a shepherdess.