In William Shakespeare’s, ‘As You Like It,’ the tension between appearance versus reality is the result of the deceptive nature of the circumstances the characters of the play find themselves in. When Rosalind dresses as a male figure, she disguises her true identity and challenges the conventions of the preconceived ideas of gender roles. Thus, in several aspects, the subversion of the role she adopted through disguise eventually becomes more honest than deceitful. Rosalind was able to fully contain her new character engaging in the deceit in the short and long term of the play. The idiosyncratic nature of the play essentially advocates social struggles of gender roles and the truth behind ...view middle of the document...
By dressing as a man, Rosalind sensed that she was able to experience all the true emotions she would not have been able to experience under the constraints of the female world. She was playing a part and eventually it mirrored her reality, leading to the assumption that
Duke Senior refers to the theatrical nature of life signifying that being human is simply a role of acting, played by all.
‘Thou see’st we are not all alone unhappy: This wide and universal theatre presents more woeful pageants than the scene wherein we play in.’ (Act II, Scene VII, pg. 43).
It is depressing to consider that human existence is just a part, alluding that life itself is a harrowing parade. This challenges the façade that characters wear in order to hide their true emotions. However, perhaps the Duke found comfort in the assumed belief that human anguish is a collective experience, this particularly is expressed through the melancholy Jacques and the way he enquiries about how the world operates. Undoubtedly signifying that he understands the realisation of what is true and what is false.
An appearance can be worn through love.
‘…the oath of a lover is no stronger than the word of a tapster: they are both the confirmers of false reckonings…’ (Celia, Act 3, Scene 5, pg. 67).
Celia is referring to the deceptive nature of affection. It is supposed that the promises of one who is in love cannot be wholeheartedly trusted. One must elicit their sympathy to an extent that does not override true, heartfelt emotion. Love can make you blind; although the passion is not genuine,...