“All The World’s a Stage” by William Shakespeare is a short poem comparing our lives and the many stages we have to a theatrical play and the many rolls an actor plays in them. William Shakespeare identifies the seven stages a person goes through in life. Infancy, the stage where he is a baby introduced to the world, crying and puking in the nurse’s arms. Childhood, this is the stage where he is growing up and starting school with no enthusiasm. The lover, this is the stage where he has a mistress and falls in love with her, while he tries to sing her a song he can’t look into her eyes because he’s so shy.
The soldier is when he tries to keep his reputation thinking less of himself and more of others, and always being ready to fight. The justice stage is where he has gained wisdom and prosperity by the many experiences he had in life. The old age stage is when he begins to lose his charm physically and mentally, he also loses his firmness and personality. Finally, physical and mental lose and death, he begins to become dependent on others like a child and needs constant help from others to perform any tasks; he slowly loses his teeth, eyesight, and taste, until he finally dies.
In this paper I will analyze the way William Shakespeare compares a person’s life and its many stages to a theatrical stage and the many rolls and actor performs, his tone, how he uses explicit details, imagery, repetition, consonance, and any other figurative language he uses in this poem. Tone The tone in this poem in my opinion is that William Shakespeare feels as if everyone ends up the way people do just because we all go through life as if we were actors on a stage reading a script knowing every step to take till the very end.
He is accepting of death, he knows that everyone goes through every single stage of life assuming they know what do to do next, but no one really does. I came to this conclusion because Shakespeare shows no type of anger or excitement throughout the poem. He is neutral; he is neither afraid of death nor excited about it. He feels as if everyone has a purpose in life and to find that purpose you have to go through every stage. It doesn’t matter how confident you are, how hard you try, or how fast you get through each stage, everyone will always end the same way, dying.
Shakespeare knows you cannot skip this part of life no matter who you are. One can only enjoy the time you have and wait for your time to come. He understands no one’s life is fully complete until you go through your final stage of life and die. Imagery William Shakespeare uses a lot of very strong visual imagery though out his poem. In line 7-9 one can visualize a little boy in the morning, tired and very slowly dragging himself to school with his satchel, when he says “the whining schoolboy, with his satchel and shining morning face, creeping like a snail unwillingly to school. Another sense of strong imagery is in line 5-6, when he says “at first, the infant, mewling and puking in the nurse’s arms. ” In this line one can easily picture a nurse holding a baby who just came into this world for the first time, whining, squirming, and puking in her arms. In line 9-11 William Shakespeare says “the lover sighing like furnace, with a woeful ballad made to his mistress’ eyebrow. ” Here he explains that the lover wrote his mistress a song like poem to express his love to her, but his too shy to look her in the eyes while he sings to her.
William Shakespeare uses the entire poem “All the World’s a Stage” as a metaphor to compare the stages of life to a theatrical stage. He explains how the rolls we play throughout our lives are like the rolls an actor plays on stage. He makes sure to say that no one is ever the same person their entire life, just as an actor doesn’t stay the same throughout a play. William Shakespeare uses strong imagery and metaphor in the poem for us to picture images every stage and how we change all throughout them as we read. Sound Sound is a very big part of this poem, because he uses a specific structure, some rhyme and repetition.
The structure of this poem is very important because each stage is in order. He goes from infant, to schoolboy, to lover, to soldier, to justice, to old age, and finally death. For one’s life to start you must be born into this world as an infant; then you slowly grow into a schoolboy, become a lover and then a soldier trying to keep your reputation. You gain wisdom and justice and then you grow into old age where you lose your appearance physically and mentally. Lastly you become dependent on others and eventually your life is over.
This poem also has some rhyme in it but not much. You will not find rhyme in the same line. In line 7 he uses the word “whining” and in line 8 he uses the word “shining” to describe the schoolboy, which both words rhyme with each other. He doesn’t feel the need to have to rhyme so much in this poem for one to fully understand the metaphor he is conveying. He also uses repetition in the last line of the poem. As he says “sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything” he repeats “sans” to let you know he has lost his teeth, eyes, taste, everything as he dies.
Theme The theme to “All the World’s a Stage” in my opinion is live life to the fullest with no regrets. Everyone should have their own life, and do their own thing. No one should have the same routine every single day, that’s boring. Be spontaneous, do things you’d never imagine doing. You’d be surprised at the many things one can do in this world at any age; we just have to be willing to leave our comfort zone and let loose. One should not let another person take over their life for any reason.
We should have control of it, and be able to do what we want when we want, and not have to ask for permission. Not everyone goes through each stage of life at the same time, it shouldn’t matter how old one is. One should always have time to laugh and have a good time at any time no matter what. In this poem it is very clear that William Shakespeare wants you to understand how one goes through life. One usually goes through life making choices behind choices, living off your decisions and its consequences. We each have our own routine we follow day by day, even if we don’t always notice it.
It’s as if were a character in a play and we follow a script we memorize every day, until something unexpected happens and our role changes. We have to accommodate the new situation into our schedule and try to make it work. We also have time to squeeze in some fun and live. We tend to surprise ourselves from time to time to shake up our lives a little. If you go through your whole life thinking “what if” isn’t healthy, you need to take a risk and throw yourself out there. Have fun and live your life while you still have it.