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Appearance Versus Reality

2 Pages 582 Words

Appearance Versus Reality
Throughout life people are constantly faced with issues of appearance versus reality. Hypocrites seem to be everywhere, saying one thing but thinking another. Remember the people that you thought were geeks but turned out to be pretty cool once you got to know them, or that snobby upperclassman who you bumped into at the library who turned out to be a lot more interesting than you expected. It seems that our lives are filled and complicated by this conflict between appearance and reality. In the two plays, Much Ado About Nothing and A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Shakespeare takes our everyday battles of appearance versus reality and makes them into a comical demonstration of our own human nature.
In Much Ado About Nothing, the entire play revolves around the difference between actual and appeared realities due to characters overhearing other’s conversations. The entire play consists of incidents of characters eavesdropping and reporting false messages to others; the story beings to follow a line of falsities appearing to be real. It is interesting to be aware of the title of the play as Much Ado About Nothing, and also that the meaning of the word “nothing” as having multiple meanings. Firstly, in Elizabethan common dialect, the word “nothing” was pronounced the same as “noting” which means observing, overhearing, and perceiving; recall that many of the key events in the play occur when characters are “noting” others. J.N. Smith of Gradesaver writes “That there is a special effort made by the characters to mask their true emotions in order to protect themselves. Beatrice and Benedick are merely projected manifestations of this” (Gradesaver). It seems that because of “noting” many things seemed to be different from how they really were in reality. Hero appeared to be unchaste, Don John appeared to be a friend, Claudio appears to love Hero yet he abandons her so easily, Beatrice and ...

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