A Midsummer Night's Dream' by William Shakespeare. This is an essay about how Shakespeare enables to convey theme through the characters of Hermia, Helena, Demetrius and Lysander.

Essay by nathan42Junior High, 8th gradeA-, March 2004

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'A Midsummer Night's Dream'- How Characters Convey Theme

In 'A Midsummer Night's Dream', Shakespeare uses his characters, as well as plot to convey theme. The characters of Hermia, Lysander, Demetrius and Helena all portray the theme of love in different ways.

Hermia is a very loyal person but is very determined to get her own way. She is willing to die, for example, if she cannot marry her beloved Lysander. Hermia's father, Egeus, refers to her determination as 'stubborn harshness' (1:1 line 39) Her determination may be made greater by the fact that she is smaller than most of the other characters, and therefore feels that she needs to be determined to be respected.

Hermia also has a scene of decorum when she makes Lysander sleep away from her in the forest. 'Nay, good Lysander; for my sake, my dear, Lie further off yet, do not lie so near.

(2:2 lines 40-41)

We also learn from Helena, that Hermia had a bad temper when she was at school. She says, 'O when she is angry, she is keen and shrewd; she was a vixen when she went to school, and though she be but little, she is fierce.' This shows at the beginning, when her father tells her what to do. It shows again when she thinks that Demetrius has killed Lysander. She tells him 'Out, dog! Out, cur! Thou drivest me past the bounds of maiden's patience. Hast thou slain him, then?' (3:2 lines 53-55)

Hermia conveys the theme of revolution when she fights her father and the Duke of Athens, Theseus, for the right to marry her true love, Lysander.

Hermia conveys the theme of love throughout the play, but her feelings waver slightly when Lysander speaks cruelly of her after the '...