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Word Count: 955
In A Midsummer Nights Dream Shakespeare uses the green world and its inhabitants as a symbol of imagination The characters flee from reality to escape the laws that govern everyday life in Athens The importance of imagination reveals itself when the constraints of everyday life are lost in this realm The fact that actors fall asleep multiple times reinforces Shakespeares allusion to an escape from reality Fairies playfully create a magical scene creating a suspension of disbelief for the actors as well as the audience The problems that these characters face are remedied because of the ability of the mind to create this mythical world Harmony is restored to the characters lives because of their ability to bring fantasy into reality Shakespeare portrays the power of the imagination as humanitys most divine quality because it allows one to embrace a realm outside of this world and allows one envision fantasy In Athens laws of the society threaten the characters freedom The sharp Athenian law pursues these characters and causes them to escape into the forest Lysander states From Athens her house remote seven leagues And she respects me as her only son There gentle Hermia may I marry thee And to that place the sharp Athenian law Cannot pursue us Ii156 Here Lysander suggests to Hermia that the two of them retreat from society to escape from the law that binds them Shakespeare uses the forest to represent the human imagination which is manifested in the ability to dream He focuses upon the abilities of the human mind to temporarily escape the harsh rules of society The rules of society do not govern their actions as long as they are in the forest Helena and Demetrius retreat into the woods yet these characters are not led into the realm of imagination to escape the persecution of society Unlike Hermia and Lysander Demetrius and Helena retreat into the forest because of their infatuation with others
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