A Midsummer Night's Dream Study Guide

A Midsummer Night's Dream Study Guide

Original title:
A Midsummer Night's Dream
July 2016 by Simon & Schuster Paperbacks (first published 1595)
ISBN 0743477545 (ISBN13: 9780743477543)

“A Midsummer Night’s Dream” is a great summery comedy written by William Shakespeare in 1596. The text reads quite differently from typical author’s creations. It is very light and airy-fairy to the point that it’s hard to tell where is the reality and where is a dream.

Get ready, put on your fancy clothes, turn on the music – we are going to the wedding! The Duke of a great city of Athens is getting married to Hippolyta, who is also a queen. Typically for Shakespeare, the loved ones quarrel and make up easily, the audience is kept worried but happy, the actors surprise us on every page.

The location of the play is a majestic Fairyland forest where the soon-to-be-married and six other actors encounter lots of adventures. There’s also a love triangle or more of a quadrangle. The protagonists of the play are the four couples who constantly interact with each other. 

Hermia is portrayed as a very decent lady refusing to marry the man chosen by her father. Helena, on the contrary, is in love with this man and is willing to do everything to get his attention. Titania has the guts to disobey her husband, king of the fairies.

With a little bit of magic, the couples fall in and out of love quickly. The spectators observe the other side of love when your loved one starts to court the other person. It’s painful and not fair. The author reminds us that everything is temporary, and even good actors can play a bad role or play a role badly. 

The poem will leave even the most sophisticated readers satisfied. It will also leave behind lots of questions. Was it all for real? Or was it just a dream? Maybe it’s a joke? But then there’s a grain of a joke in every joke.

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