Much Ado About Nothing - Passion vs. Reason


Passion vs. Reason

 
Sometimes, when a man and a woman are interested in each other, they pretend to feel exactly the opposite. They hide their feelings of love inside and act like they absolutely hate each other. Being too proud to concede their love, they leave themselves vulnerable to rejection by the other one, and they continue the farce. This situation is often associated with relationships that take place during the adolescent stages of people?s lives, but in Much Ado About Nothing these types of goings on take place between a mature man and woman. These characters are Benedict and Beatrice. Every time they met, battles of wit and words begin. Not one kind word was uttered between the two. Their love was never to be realized though, until they both fell victim to underhanded plots devised by their friends. Shakespeare comments on many aspects of love and relationships in his plays including Much Ado About Nothing. One of these aspects being Passion vs. Reason, is displayed through the relationship of Beatrice and Benedict. The aspect of Passion vs. Reason greatly affects the two throughout the play.
The notion that Beatrice was not fond of Benedict was conveyed very early in the first act. As news of the arrival of Benedict and company to Messina was announced, Beatrice immediately started to poke fun at him. She inquired as to who he had become friendly with and then began to say she knew Benedict to be fickle and have a new sworn friend every time that she sees him. This was the first clue to her distaste and also lets one see that she had some sort of interaction with Benedict in the past that left her feeling this way toward him. Soon after this scene, Benedict arrives and almost instantaneously they began to quarrel with each other. They kept on bickering and arguing, never letting the other get the last word in and never giving up any ground in their battle. For each, their cunning wit was the weapon of choice. Judging by the way that they seemed to have been acting, one would guess that there was a genuine hatred between the two, but the way that they carried on makes one must think that there was something more at hand. It might have clued the reader in to a suppressed sense of competition between the two which could have been brought about by a sense of insecurity that each of them possessed. They seemed to always need the approval of their friends and could never possibly have given in to one another. This is evident because their quarrels were always in public and neither of them ever wanted to lose those battles. They never seemed to lose the anger that they possessed and always tried to get in the last word, never conceding to the other at all. They always had be the victor in front of their companions.
One night while at a masked ball under disguise Benedict goes to ask Beatrice to dance with him. She, unknowing that it is he, went on to inquire about the masked man?s knowledge of Benedict. She then went on to make fun of him, calling him a "jester" and a simple object of amusement to the Prince and all of his company. She lashed out even more and said that they did not truly like him at all, and if it had not been for their amusement by him, he would not be with them. Since Benedict was the man behind the mask he was unable defend himself without having given up his identity, which then would have created a scene with Beatrice. This was not something that he wanted, which was obvious because he did go to her to dance and no one else. He was starting to show the reader his interest in her and the way he did it under the comfort of the mask assures that he would not to be ridiculed by her if she knew if it was him asking her to dance. This proved the insecurity that he possessed. Though Beatrice gave fewer obvious clues as to her interest in Benedict, one could have guessed that since she always was talking and thinking about him that she must have possessed some kind