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Shakespeare also reminds the audience of the existing patriarchy through Lord Capulet, who sees Juliet simply as an object to be bartered. Though Capulet initially claims to have his daughter's welfare in mind, he quickly turns cruel when she defies him. Juliet's strength is admirable to the audience, but is anathema to men, like her father, whose power she is threatening.
The conflict between Juliet and her father is another example of the disparity between young and old, which appears several times in Act 3. Romeo speaks of Friar Laurence’s ignorance of his love for Juliet, saying that the Friar could never understand because he is not “young.” Furthermore, the final scene reveals how adults can no longer understand youthful passion. Lady Capulet refuses to consider Juliet’s refusal to marry Paris, and even the Nurse speaks of Paris as a virtuous man worthy of her hand (thus revealing her underlying resentment of her young charge).