English Literature / Drama GCSE: Romeo and Juliet - Act 3, Scene 1 - Spoiling for a fight (workshop)

The company discuss Shakespeare’s language and the reason for the fight.

Mercutio plays with words, making Tybalt feel foolish.

Romeo attempts to be a peacemaker which disarms Tybalt and infuriates Mercutio.

This short film is from the BBC series, Shakespeare Unlocked.

Teacher Notes

This short films prompts discussion on individual character motivation.

Before watching, ask your students to discuss how people can use language to start a fight or to stop it.

If someone opens an exchange by insulting you, how difficult is it to resist the urge to fight back?

Conversely, how easy is it to pick up neutral words and turn them into insults?

Students could work in pairs, where one tries to defuse a situation and the other tries to stir up an argument.

Curriculum Notes

This short film is suitable for teaching GCSE English literature and drama in England, Wales and Northern Ireland and National 4/ 5 in Scotland.

More from Shakespeare Unlocked - Romeo and Juliet

Act 3, Scene 1 - Death of Mercutio (workshop)
Act 3, Scene 1 - The Fight
Act 3, Scene 5 - Juliet is abandoned (workshop)
About the 2011 RSC production
Act 2, Scene 2 - Juliet's soliloquy (workshop)
Act 2, Scene 2 - Lovers unite (workshop)
Act 2, Scene 2 - Romeo's soliloquy (workshop)
Act 2, Scene 2 - The Balcony