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Shakespeare’s “As You Like It” is a formulaic comedy where the ideals of love and virtues triumph over everything else. The figures in the play are not complex, and while each character retains their distinction, there is nothing significant or remarkable to the layers of their unearthing. There are some typographical characters in the play that blend in well with the theme that it portrays.
The most important characters in “As You Like It” are Rosalind, Orlando, Jaques, and Touchstone.
Rosalind dominates the whole play, and she is the character who displays some layers of complexity as well as the subtlety of emotions.
Orlando is a strong, forthright, and headstrong character, but the reader or audience feels that Rosalind has settled for someone less magnificent than her. The observations of Jaques and Touchstone are quite bright and shine through the play.
There are also rather dull stages within the play that are iterating quite the ordinary.
Rosalind is both successful as well as knowledgeable. She is also a charming self-critic. She is also open to being receptive to circumstances, unlike Jacque, who refuses to participate in the foolishness of others around him.
Rosalind is an astute observer and yet likes to mingle with people with wit.
She even challenges Orlando’s idealism by pointing it out to be spiritual and unreal. She even challenges her devotion to Silvius toward Phoebe. Overall she is a fresh critic of the irrationality of human behavior and social expectations, yet she maintains grace and demeanor.
However, she is also a softer spirit who gets undone at her lover’s spirit of little tardiness and even faints at the sight of her lover’s blood. She is no way away from her feelings and the thicket of human emotions amidst her careful reasoning and balancing wit.
She stands out as a favorite among feminist Shakespearean critics and comes with boldness and imagination brought to the same plate.
A lot in her is being shown through her disguised self. With her basic understanding of human characters, she comes with the proper instructions and tutorship for a young man who wants to woo his lover. She contorts society’s limitations on gender differences and especially undermines the capabilities of feminine power.
The greatest comic appeal of the play lies in the disguises played by Rosalind that defy the conventions of male-female expectations.
The Elizabethan audience could have been apprehensive about her character as she defied the assertions of the expected roles posed by a male-dominated society.
However, her character shows a new realm to the audience just as the forest dwellers in the play leave the familiar world behind them to come to a new learning experience with the enchanted realm.
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