Contrastingly, Rosaline and Romeo have a tendency to be pretentious and affected. As Kiernan Ryan notes, Romeo is “trapped inside the hackneyed role and ossified verse of the Petrarchan lover. His rhyming speech is paralysed by the dead weight of clichéd paradoxes and inert metaphors, exiled from actual experience and emotions” (Ryan, Shakespeare, 2nd ed: Prentice Hall, 1995). “She is too fair, too wise, wisely too fair, To merit bliss by making me despair. She hath forsworn to love, and in that vow Do I live dead that live to tell it now”). Such language traps both lover and loved in a “degrading charade of domination and subjection”. Romeo seems to search for a self elsewhere, “I have lost myself, I am not here.”
In Act 1, scene 1, the buffoonish Samson begins a brawl between the Montagues and Capulets by flicking his thumbnail from behind his upper teeth, an insulting gesture known as biting the thumb. He engages in this juvenile and vulgar display because he wants to get into a fight with the Montagues but doesn’t want to be accused of starting the fight by making an explicit insult. Because of his timidity, he settles for being annoying rather than challenging. The thumb-biting, as an essentially meaningless gesture, represents the foolishness of the entire Capulet/Montague feud and the stupidity of violence in general.
GUTHRIE Tribes, Dollhouse. THEATER Josh has designed lighting at many of the top regional theaters in the country including the Mark Taper Forum, Goodman Theatre, Geffen Playhouse, Baltimore Center Stage, Kirk Douglas Theatre, Pasadena Playhouse, Trinity Repertory Theater, Long Wharf Theatre, Alliance Theatre, South Coast Repertory, Geva Theatre Center, Actors Theatre of Louisville, PlayMakers Repertory, Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park, Philadelphia Theatre Company, Paper Mill Playhouse. TEACHING Adjunct professor at the UCLA School of Theater, Film and Television. AWARDS Received the NEA/TCG Career Development Program for Designers Grant; Member of the O’Neill National Playwrights Conference Artistic Council. EDUCATION ., NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts.