Thursday, 9 February 2012

Much Ado About Fashion

"What a deformed thief this fashion is."

BORACHIO 

    That shows thou art unconfirmed. Thou knowest that 
    the fashion of a doublet, or a hat, or a cloak, is 
    nothing to a man. 

CONRADE 

    Yes, it is apparel. 

BORACHIO 

    I mean, the fashion. 

CONRADE 

    Yes, the fashion is the fashion. 

BORACHIO 

    Tush! I may as well say the fool's the fool. But 
    seest thou not what a deformed thief this fashion 
    is? 

Shakespeare is not of course directly associated with fashion and when I picture him I always imagine him in that same red Elizabethan tunic sort of thing that he seems to be wearing in possibly the most famous picture of him; the Shakespeare image that is known and recognised around the world today. However, when I read the play, Much Ado About Nothing last year at school I planned this post based on the fact that whenever I searched for fashion quotes the quote, "What a deformed thief this fashion is" always came up but since reading the play I now know a bit of background of it.

We are now reading Romeo and Juliet, possibly Shakespeare's most famous play and one of the greatest love stories of all time. Although I like English I wouldn't say that I enjoy reading Shakespeare but I am enjoying this play and was excited about reading it. Mostly because it was at the top of the top ten plays to read in Classy by Derek Blasberg and the 1996 remake film (starring Leonardo DiCaprio) made it onto Glamour magazines list of 20 most fashionable films. Although, we started to watch this adaption today and I thought that the Hawaiian shirts were a massive faux pas on the Montague's part (as was the pink hair) and there was nothing special about what Juliet was wearing. Nevertheless, it was a good film but we have only watched an hour of it so far.

Much Ado About Nothing is, well, what we would today call a rom-com because it is a romantic comedy whereas Romeo and Juliet is a romantic tragedy (somehow rom-tra doesn't quite have the same ring to it.) MAAD also explores the idea of feminism depending on how you look at it. Beatrice is a very headstrong outgoing woman whereas her cousin, Hero is rather petty and needs someone to depend on. Women like Beatrice were unusual in Shakespearian times but today there are a lot more independent, headstrong women and rightly so. The idea of modern feminism is so hot right now. 

People always moan about how most of what we learn at school will never be useful in our lives and I totally agree and most of the time I'm moaning (in maths and science anyway.) But guess what? Analysing Shakespeare has come in handy. Nerdy as it sounds, I am currently skimming through the notes that I made in class last year because I can't really remember that much about the story. I have just come across a sheet which is to do with our own views on love where we had to mark some statements as true or false. It is strange to see that some of my views have changed from when we actually did it last spring. Some of the statements are:

"Men and women should marry persons of a similar social and economic status as themselves."
I said true because having social and economic similarities can help to make a relationship work as the couple have more in common. You then also know that one of the couple is not just marrying for social or economic status. However, since then I have changed my mind. I think false. You should marry whoever you love. Cliché I know and I think that might be why I avoided that explanation in the first place!

"People choose with whom they will fall in love."
False because if you fall in love with someone but they do not love you back then that does not mean that you stop loving them but if you had the choice then surely you would choose to stop loving them. I still feel the same way.


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