Humor in Shakespeare's Comedies Analytical Essay by Nicky

Humor in Shakespeare's Comedies
A look at the use of humor in several of Shakespeare's comedies.
# 148724 | 835 words | 3 sources | MLA | 2011 | US

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This paper examines and analyzes the importance of comedy and friendship in Shakespeare's "A Midsummer's Night Dream", "Twelfth Night" and "As You Like It." The paper explores the comic elements of each work, giving brief plot summaries and character descriptions. It also compares and contrasts the humor in each work, noting that Shakespeare used comedy in a harmless way. The paper concludes by stating that these plays show us the importance of comedy because it has the ability to rise above race and class and focus on the one true emotion that can sometimes save a life - laughter

From the Paper:

"In A Midsummer's Night Dream, comedy becomes a focal point that drives the play. Comedy also becomes the force that brings people together in this play. Humor emerges through the very distance characters of the fairies and the mortals. Shakespeare weaves a world of reality mixed with fantasy that sets the stage for nothing but humor. The fairies are funny with mischievous Puck as their leader in making love a comedic mess. When Puck says, "Cupid is a knavish lad, / Thus to make poor females mad" (Shakespeare Midsummer III.ii.440-1), he identifies how love sometimes makes people do crazy things. With the aid of Bottom, Puck and the others bring us world of love that is forgiving because, in the end, no one is hurt and all ends well. An example of the humor in this play is seen when Lysander, and Demetrius are thwarted by Puck. He successfully confuses the men so they have no sense of direction, demonstrating mortals in love. Lysander points out that the one responsible for his confusion is "much lighter-heeled" (III.ii.416) than he and "faster he did fly" (III.ii.417). This scene demonstrates Shakespeare's ability to use humor in a harmless way."

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Shakespeare, William. A Midsummer Night's Dream. New York: Signet Classics. 1963.
  • ---. As You Like It. New York: Washington Square Press. 1997.
  • ---. Twelfth Night. The Complete Works of William Shakespeare. New York: Barnes and Noble Books. 1994.

Cite this Analytical Essay:

APA Format

Humor in Shakespeare's Comedies (2011, November 03) Retrieved May 13, 2021, from

MLA Format

"Humor in Shakespeare's Comedies" 03 November 2011. Web. 13 May. 2021. <>