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As You Like It moves between two worlds: one is characterized by hatred and hostility, and the other is characterized by love and naturalness. The court, dominated by the evil Duke Frederick, is a world of false sophistication, unnatural pomp, animosity, jealousy, and deception. In stark contrast, the Forest of Arden is characterized by freedom, lack of constraint, beauty, and pure emotion.
In the court, brother turns against brother, and parent turns against child. Duke Frederick steals his brother's dukedom and drives Duke Senior into a life of exile in the Forest of Arden; he also banishes Rosalind into the forest and loses his own daughter, Celia, in the process. In a like manner, Oliver's hostility towards Orlando drives him into the forest. Hostility and hatred are clearly the key characteristics of the court portrayed in the play.
In contrast to the court, the forest is a place of peace and harmony, far from the trappings of society; as a result, love flourishes in the forest. It is in Arden where Oliver falls in love with Celia, where Touchstone falls in love with Audrey, and where the love of Orlando and Rosalind is allowed to flower into marriage. To emphasize the joy and peace offered by the forest, Shakespeare fills it with the melodies of birds and the songs of happy humans.
Everyone who comes to the Forest of Arden is affected by its beauty and freedom. Touchstone, who originally scorned the pastoral life, falls in love with Audrey and begins to enjoy the forest. Oliver experiences a total conversion in the forest; after Orlando saves him from the lioness, he is a changed man. He falls in love with Celia and promises to give Orlando that which is owed him. Even Duke Frederick has a conversion on the way to the forest; the encounters a religious man, who improves the duke's morals. He sees the error of his ways and promises to return the dukedom and ducal rights to Duke Senior.
At the end of the play, all ends well in the Forest of Arden. Hatred and hostility have been overcome; love has flourished; and harmony reigns over all.