Mistaken Identity In A Midsummer Night's Dream

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How Mistaken Identities Cause Out of Balance Love
In William Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, the comedy element of mistaken identities causes the aspect of love to become unbalanced. The element of mistaken identities is when a character is confused with another character. Mistaken identities can lead to complications in the plot that must be resolved, such as love out of balance. This is when love is upset and the characters are not paired with their correct match, or if two characters love one, and another is left behind. Identities being mistaken in A Midsummer Night’s Dream causing love to be out of balance creates the main conflict of the play. The comedic element of mistaken identities is used frequently in Acts II and III
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He declares that the flower must use its full power on the man, because he has no love for the woman. Puck also confuses Hermia for Helena when he expresses sympathy for the woman. The element of mistaken identities is being demonstrated because Puck has mistaken Lysander for Demetrius, causing him to apply the love juice to Lysander. This leads to love becoming out of balance because Lysander will no longer love Hermia and will instead love Helena. This is an example of Shakespearean comedy because it is the crucial point in the plot since it causes the main problem. Shakespeare also uses the element of mistaken identities in Act III, Scene ii after Puck gave Demetrius the love juice. Now, both men are fighting over Helena, who is their new love, and insulting Hermia. The men have decided to settle their disagreement by going deeper into the woods to fight for Helena’s hand. Puck must stop the two before they get injured. To do so, he mimics their voices to get the two lost and separated so he can reverse the…show more content…
speak thou now.”
Demetrius (Puck): “Here, villain; drawn and ready. Where art thou?”
Lysander: “I will be with thee straight.”
Demetrius (Puck): “Follow me, then,/ To plainer ground.” (3.2.419-423)
Puck confuses Demetrius as well until both men are drowsy. The men sleep and he gives Lysander the antidote. This demonstrates the comedic element of mistaken identities because Puck successfully convinces each man that he is the other. This point in the play can be analyzed as Shakespearean comedy because it was incorporated to solve the play’s main conflict. It resolves the main conflict by allowing Puck to give Lysander the antidote, but not Demetrius who still loves Helena. It restores balance to the aspect of love in the play because the four lovers are split into two couples. Love is in balance after Lysander is given the antidote. Lysander loves Hermia and Demetrius is left under the effects of the love juice and loves Helena. Love is in balance and all is well since the problem forged by mistaken identities has been
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