Romeo and Juliet (R&J), Cousin Kate (CK) and sweet eighteen (SW18) all present the theme of innocence. In R&J and CK we see loss of innocence however in SW18 we see the protection of innocence. R&J was written by William Shakespeare in 1594, CK was written by Christina Rossetti in 1830 and finally SW18 was written by Sheenagh Pugh. R&J is a play set in Verona, Italy. A boy (Romeo) and a girl (Juliet) who fall in love. But they come from families which hate each other, and know they will not be allowed to marry. At the start of the play Juliet is an innocent teenager who is a stranger to the world however as the play progress she soon matures and loses her innocence when she goes against her father’s wishes and marries Romeo. CK is in the form of a dramatic monologue, directly addressed to "Cousin Kate", who is called "you" throughout, although she is clearly not present. CK’s structure follows this narrative, telling the story of the relationship the speaker had with the lord, then the betrayal, and finally, in the last few lines, the twist ending, of the speaker’s son. The narrator is innocent at the start of the play yet she loses her innocence much like R&J. SW18 is based around a middle aged woman who has sexual desires for a young boy who is unaware of this current situation which highlights the boys innocence as he is ‘unaware‘ of what is going on. SW18 is different to R&J and CK because the narrator does not destroy the young boys innocence, instead she is preserves it. In SW18 the narrator lists examples of the boy’s innocence – ‘your only scars where you tried to shave before there was any need’. The narrator in SW18 is overwhelmed by the beauty of the boy’s innocence whereas the Lord Capulet is protective of his daughter yet regards her as a business proposition.
In R&J innocence is introduced in the prologue , the words ‘ star-crossed lovers take their life’ establishes the idea that something will go wrong as the play progresses, in addition it...
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