In novels, setting often contributes to the action and themes of a play. Novels can have more than one setting showing different themes of the novel. With changes in setting the themes of the novel can change from being strict to more freedom. Setting can also change the action of a novel from being dull and boring to excitement. In the play, A Midsummer Night's Dream by William Shakespeare, Shakespeare contrasts the settings Athens and the forest to display different action and themes inside the play.
Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream lays out how the setting of Athens shows the harsher side of the play. Athens shows the harshness of A Midsummer Night's Dream with very strict laws. Shakespeare displays Athens organized side by, "I beg the ancient privilege of Athens. As she is mine, I may dispose of her-Which shall be either to this gentleman Or to her death-according to our law Immediately provided in that case." (1.1.41-45). Shakespeare shows how the setting of Athens displays how harsh and strict the lives of Athenians are in Athens by Egeus demanding Hermia either marry Demetrius or die by law. Athens also shows the unforgivingness of love. Shakespeare shows the unforgivingness by, "Either to die the death or to abjure Forever the society of men." (1.1.65-66). Theseus displays the harsh world of Athens to Hermia by either marrying someone she does not love, being executed or living the life of a nun. In Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream Athens shows the harsher side of the play by be unforgiving and cruel with laws.
Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream also shows a completely opposite setting of the mystical forest right outside Athens. The forest displays the mystical side of play showing fairies and love. Shakespeare displays the free for all of love by, "Lord, what fools these mortals be!"(3.2.115). Pucks says this after the crazy fight with all four lovers in which the lovers display all their emotion and love but also display how crazy love can make one be.