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Rome Edition

Genre in flux-Antony & Cleopatra


A scene from Antony and Cleopatra that represents a “genre in flux” would be the ending scene where Antony commits suicide and Cleopatra as well. At this point of the story, the story of Antony and Cleopatra shifts from a love story to a tragic love story. The world “tragic” which usually associated with Greek tragic heroes or even Shakespeare’s tragic stories implies a more complex story that foreshadows the death of the protagonist. In this story line, Antony although “successful” and thought to have had it all had all but one thing..the freedom to love whomever he pleased. In some way, this story does in fact reflect the classical story of Romeo and Juliet, about forbidden love which Antony had with Cleopatra, which happens to be so aesthetically pleasing to the readers. It’s so pleasing to read despite it being so over done because these stories remind us about our deepest fears, a unknown reality to most of pure forbidden love. Antony’s relationship with Cleopatra is seen to be the most mature relationship in all of Shakespeare’s works. However, I will believe the “tragic hero” or the tragic story was written for Cleopatra. I believe this because right before the death of Antony, Cleopatra mentions to him that if he had any love for her to not die ( this scene was right before Antony commits suicide). However despite hearing the love of his pleading for his life, he ignored her request and died. Just how tragic is to know that love alone is not enough for your partner to choice life. That his duty to his country that did nothing for him was much greater than than the love of his life. The story ends with her killing herself with poison (the bite of a poisonous snake) which parallels the death scene with Juliet like in Romeo and Juliet.

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