In life as in literature people have certain struggles. In the novels and short stories we read this year there are several
example of inner struggles, within the characters. The basic type of struggles known to people is Man Vs Man, Man
Vs Nature and Man Vs Himself, otherwise known as inner struggle. It is when you have within yourself problems,
concerns or questions that you must decide. They often decide to keep it’s feeling and emotion to themselves. Like
the famous Ghandi once said, “It was confrontation out of real humanity which marks his true stature and which
makes his struggles and glimpses of truth of enduring significance. As a man of his time who asked the deepest
questions, even, though he could not answer them, become a man for all times and all places. [ ]
All struggles can be solved even though solving it made cause fatal deaths like in the play Romeo and Juliet. Often
short stories and novels contains some sort of inner struggle, in order to make the plot more interesting.
In real life inner struggles happen frequently from the littlest things such as thinking how to get some money in
order to get the certain things you want or probably one of the most dangerous inner struggle which is love, always
keep your mind confused or frustrated. Sometimes inner struggles cause modern day people to commit suicide.
People like Kurt Cobain has died within the years because of his inner struggle. We see that in the play Romeo and
Juliet it contains continuos inner struggles. Romeo’s character undergoes several changes in the course of the play’s
action. At first he is pictured as a typical youth smitten by love. His father’s description of him is in effect’ a
description of the Petrarchan lover:
Many a morning hath he there been seen,
With tears augmenting the fresh morning’s dew
Adding to clouds more clouds with his deep sighs;
Away from light steals home my heavy son,
And private in his chamber pens himself,
Shuts up his windows, locks fair daylight out
And makes himself an artificial night [I, I, 138-47]
Romeo’s inner struggle begins with him falling in love with Juliet. Their two families, the Capulets and the
Montegue hated each other and will not allow their children to socialize. Romeo must decide if he should go against
their wishes and see her. Mercutio’s death begins another inner struggle in Romeo’s life. Mercutio’s death leads to
Romeo’s killing of Tybalt. That killing lead to Romeo’s banishment. He wants to see Juliet but he is scared that he’ll
get caught and thrown to Jail. Once again he faces new inner struggles, but the biggest struggle of all is when he find
out that Juliet, his future, is dead, and he has to decide on whether he should stay alive or die to see her.
Juliet’s character, like Romeo’s undergoes a development during the play. There is, at the beginning of the play, a
fond attachment between Juliet and the Nurse. For example, she calls her, “O honey nurse” and “good sweet nurse.
She takes her into complete confidence. But as the play continues and Juliet becomes a new person, now
independent except for the love that binds her to her husband, She chooses action that defy the Nurse and her
parents. He detachment from the Nurses at first caused by the old women’s double-talk in coveying the news of
Tybalt’s death. Juliet asks her, “What devil art thou that dost torment me thus”? Later, after the Nurse advises her to
marry Paris, Juliet is fully disillusioned and decides to break their bond of confidence. “Ancient damnation. O most
wicked fiend!” she screams at the Nurse: “Go, counselor; Thou and my bosom henceforth shall be twain” [III, v,
In her first scenes, Juliet was submission to her parents’ wishes:
I’ll look to like, if looking liking move:
But no more deep will I endart mine eye
Than your consent gives strength to make it fly. [I, iii, 97-99]
Later, however, Juliet goes against her parents’ wishes; In fact, she resists spiritedly
When informed by her mother that she is to marry Paris:
Now, by Saint Peter’s Church and Peter too,
He shall not make me there a joyful bride.
I wonder at this haste; that I must wed
Ere he, that should be husband, comes to woo. [III, v, 117-20]
She is also torn between the conflicting emotions of love for her new husband and concern over her cousin’s death:
Shall I speak ill of him that is my husband?
Ah, poor my lord, what tongue shall smooth thy name,
When I, thy three-hour wife, have mangled it?
But, wherefore, villain, didst thou kill my cousin? [III, ii, 97-100]
Later on her most important inner struggle is a step which she fears may result in her own death:
My dismal scene I needs must act alone.
What if this mixture does not work at all?
What if it be a poison, which the Friar
Subtly hath ministered to have me dead,
Lest in this marriage he should be dishonored,
Because he married me before to Romeo?
How if, when I am laid into the tomb,
I wake before the time that Romeo
Come to redeem me? There’s a fearful point! [IV, iii, 19-33]
In short, Juliet develops from a heroine of light comedy to a heroine of tragedy.
We know the Friar as a “blessed man”. The Friar is a man of God, concerned with the problems of good and evil.
When Romeo asks the Friar to unite him and Juliet in marriage, the Friar undertakes the ceremony in the hope that
the marriage will dissolved the feud between the oppose houses.
For this alliance may so happy prove to turn your households rancor to pure love
[II, iii, 91-92] After he learns of Capulet’s plan to have Juliet marry Paris, the Friar attempts to save the lovers’
marriages with a magic potion. The Friar is a respected and beloved counselor. Romeo calls him ” my friend
professed.” Capulet welcome his daughter’s changed attitude toward Paris and applauds the Friar from whom Juliet
has just come. So to me the Friar had the most difficult inner struggle because the lives of the children with basically
in his hand. The end things were a mess. Romeo and Juliet died and the families finally realize their stupidity and
decide to end this feud.
In the “Man Who Knew How” by Dorothy L. Sayer. The man Pender seems to have an inner struggle, which is he
wants to solve a crime and struggles with how to do it. It was on a Train trip, Pender meets a man who claims to
know how to commit a foolproof murder. He refers to a nonexistent chemical, and claims that once taken, the
chemical can become lethal when the victim takes a hot bath. When a man in Pender’s neighborhood dies in his
bathtub. Pender encounters the gentleman from the train at the scene of the crime and invites the man home for a
drink. He becomes obsessed with the man’ and kills him with a final blow. Only later he found out they were the
same person famous for pulling practical jokes.
In “The Speckled Band” by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Helen stoner’s struggle is the fear of dying in the same way as
her sister did. Her sister and she had been living with her stepfather, Dr. Roylott. Two years ago, shortly before her
marriage, Julia died mysteriously. She emerged from her room screaming about a speckled band, and died shortly
afterward. Helen, because of construction in her room, is, now forced to sleep in her sister’s room and she hearing
the sounds her sister heard before she died, With the help of Holmes and Watson it was soon discovered that the
ventilator had snakes coming down the bell rope. Holmes hit it with his cane and sends it back up the bell rope,
through the vent. It retreats, bites and kills Roylott. Helen is saved.
“The Most dangerous Game” by Richard Connell. Sanger Rainsford falls from a yacht in the Caribbean and swims
to Ship-Trap Island. There he encounters General Zaroff in his magnificent chateau. Zaroff has grown bored with
hunting unreasoning animals and tells Rainsford: over dinner that he now hunts men. Rainsford is soon the quarry.
Rainsford inner struggle is to stay alive, but with quick thinking and through a series of clever tricks, he manages to
outwit Zaroff at his own game.
Brown, Judith M. Gandhi. Yau U. press
New Haven, 1989
Connell, Richard “The Most Dangerous Game”, Brandt&Brandt
New York, 1924
Sayer. Dorothy L., ” The Men Who Knew How”
Hangerman Holiday, 1961
Doyle, Arthur Conan, “The Speckled Band” Harper & Row
New York, 1892
Shakespeare, William. “Romeo and Juliet”, 1594-1596.