Violence is an apparent theme in Romeo and Juliet that is established and familiar to a modern society. Romeo and Juliet exhibits this theme of violence severely. Two feuding families, the Montague’s and the Capulets, fill the streets of Verona with violent brawls and recklessness. Unsought murders occur by the hands of both Montague’s and Capulets, causing pain and destruction within Verona walls. "Two households, both alike in dignity/ From ancient grudge, break to new mutiny/Where civil blood makes civil hands unclean." (Romeo and Juliet, Prologue, line 1-4). This violence is evident in modern day society. In September 2006, the death of a 15 year old boy, Matthew Stanley rocked the community. His death, caused by a violent, drunken brawl outside a Alex Hills party left two families and hundreds of others torn apart. "It's the most horrifying thing you could ever imagine happening to you: the senselessness, the feeling of loss, of just total nothingness" said Paul Stanley, the father of Matthew in a recent interview. Matthews destructive death was caused by impetuous behaviour – a teenager acting before they thought. The death of Mercutio and Tybalt in Romeo and Juliet are obviously apparent in modern society still to this day, with over 3500 violent incidents involving teenagers occurring in Queensland in 2006. Like violence, the theme of forbidden love is strongly present to modern audiences.
Forbidden love is a theme still recognisable in modern society. In Romeo and Juliet, the theme of forbidden love is clear. Romeo and Juliet, who are two youths from feuding families, are forbidden to love each other openly. Society pressured these two lovers to keep their true feelings and emotions hidden. Romeo and Juliet believed that their love was stronger than any family rivalry. They believed that they should never be kept apart, no matter what name they bared. Juliet: “What’s in a name? That which we call a rose/ By any other name...