Central Female Characters in An Inspector Call and Macbeth

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Sheila is the daughter of a rich factory owner therefore she has power in society because of her father. Even though she fires Eva because of jealously, she is still shown as a positive character. Lady Macbeth is wife of Macbeth (Thane of Cawdor), because in the Jacobean era women did not have power because men were in control in society. However, Lady Macbeth is in control of the relationship and she is shown to the audience as a negative character. This coursework will be about why Priestly shows Shelia as a positive character but Shakespeare shows Lady Macbeth as a negative character. Shakespeare presents Lady Macbeth as a perceptive character. For example, in Act 1 Scene 7, Lady Macbeth says to Macbeth, ‘Just screw up your courage to the uttermost’ and ‘And live a coward in thine own esteem’. Lady Macbeth uses negative words such as ‘coward’ and ‘screw up your courage’ to discourage Macbeth behaviour. Lady Macbeth is perceptive because she uses Macbeth weakness to make Macbeth come to her side to kill Duncan. Macbeth weakness was his pride and ambition. Lady Macbeth knew that if she disagrees and tells him he has no pride; Macbeth would fight for his pride. This is because Macbeth is a soldier therefore he is used to fight his pride. This was interesting because in Jacobean era, Jacobean women were pure and pious. Therefore, she would not convert Macbeth thoughts into killing the king. Furthermore, Shakespeare also shows Lady Macbeth perceptiveness in Act 1 Scene 5 she says to Macbeth ‘Look like th’ innocent flower, But be the serpent under’t’. Lady Macbeth understands that if they act innocent no one would recognise what they did. Moreover, she also calls Macbeth ‘serpent’. A ‘serpent’ is inferred as evil and sneaky; t... ... middle of paper ... ...see Lady Macbeth characteristics in a man. Therefore this can be surprising. On the other hand, Priestley presents Sheila as a positive character to spend a message to the audience. Priestley uses Sheila as a vehicle to send his message about women rights. Priestley is inferring that women can be brave, smart and powerful. In conclusion, Shakespeare is presenting Lady Macbeth as a negative character to show that women cannot be powerful or brave. On the other hand Priestley is showing Sheila as a positive person to hits that women can be power and brave and it is a good thing. There is a contrast in opinion because in the Jacobean era, women had no right and had no power in society. Unlike in the Edwardian era women are starting to have rights such as voting. It was more likely for people to find it more common an acceptable then the Edwardian era then Jacobean.

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