Lady Macbeth and Antigone

Good Essays
The consequences of acts of rebellion against their patriarchal systems by Antigone and Lady Macbeth result in their premature deaths. Two women who exist in society as property of men, yet gather the courage to speak up in order to get what they want. Each of these characters uses her dainty hands in deliberate actions against their male counterparts in wild disregard for traditional rules. An inner spirit empowers them with silent force against the men of influence in their lives. Antigone claims her superiority over Creon in confession to Ismene, the chorus, and to the King himself. She undermines his power by going against the decreed law, and instead honors her brother Polyneices by the act of burial. Similar to Lady Macbeth, our heroine Antigone applies the make-up of a man’s abilities as a formidable force against the patriarchy. Near the end of her life, she fears nothing, nor regrets the rebellious acts against the king that bring to her the solace of death. Antigone’s lips gush bold words as bright as burning stars, and from her soft, supple throat, she spews at Creon, “If this hurries me to death before my time/ Such a death is gain.” (210). (However, while doing so she writes off the only female remaining in her line.) (honor her male family member), The menacing defiance of Antigone lingers like a wet sliver of wood under a parched nail when she refuses to acknowledge his public shaming of her actions. The burial now serves as a public forum for Antigone to proudly claim Creon’s lack of power over her as a ruler and as a man.
Lady Macbeth adopts a different strategy to use her female influence to convince her husband Macbeth to kill for the coveted throne, but each conversation takes her closer to her untimely deat...

... middle of paper ...

... pity and fear. In another step further in removal from womanhood, she requests from creatures of evil to turn her mother’s milk into a poison unfit for maternal care of a child. Such acts against the womanly disposition are labeled by Elizabeth Klett to be unnatural. In her introspective article about the women in Macbeth she claims they are so, “Not […] necessary evil, but because they critique their roles, either directly or indirectly, in an oppressive patriarical world”. Lady Macbeth upsets the natural order of known behaviors to women, and changes the course of her husband’s destiny as well as her own. Later in the play, Macbeth changes into man who has become the cold, callous warmonger his wife so venemently fought for. Unfortunately, the request of thickened blood now thins, and Lady Macbeth cannot deny her guilt as she slowly crumbles under the pressure.
Get Access