Lady Macbeth’s atypical and complex character directly challenged the archetypal principles and beliefs of the Jacobean era which as a result, drew major fascination through the ages. Lady Macbeth was Shakespeare’s device to not only stimulate audience’s emotions, but to also provide historical context and elicit dominant themes which reflected Jacobean society. Her ambiguous character and remarkable influences in the play raised a lot of controversy and fascination amongst both modern and Jacobean audiences. She can either be seen as linked to the witches in a feminist bid to overthrow the balance of power, or as a representation of the evil side of Macbeth. Nevertheless, it was her distinct characteristics and actions which ultimately catalysed the chain of conflicts of the play.
"You'd do it if you loved me!" "If I were a man, I'd do it myself!" But Macbeth's mind is made up by her assurance that they may do it safely by fixing the guilt upon Duncan's chamberlains. (72) L.C. Knights in the essay "Macbeth" describes the unnaturalness of Lady Macbeth's words and actions: Thus the sense of the unnaturalness of evil is evoked not only be repeated explicit references ("nature's mischief," "nature seems dead," " 'Tis unnatural, even like the deed that's done," and so on) but by the expression of unnatural sentiments and an unnatural violence of tone in such things as Lady Macbeth's invocation of the "spirits" who will "unsex" her, and her affirmation that she would murder the babe at her breast if she had sworn to do it.
"Yet I do fear thy nature, it is too full o' th' milk of humane kindness, to catch the nearest way". This is ironic because he treats her as an equal and yet she thinks that he should be more like her. It is Lady Macbeth's ambition that makes her think of murder. After hearing about the prophecy, she takes it upon herself to make sure that it comes true, rather than waiting for it. Shakespeare wants the audience to see the powerful and impatient side of Lady Macbeth in this part of the scene.
The Persuasiveness of Lady Macbeth When considering a dilemma, we usually turn towards those we love for advice, since they are the ones to whom we listen. In William Shakespears' Macbeth, Lady Macbeth is greatly responsible for the killing of King Duncan. Lady Macbeth reveals her secret evil nature, which pushes her towards her evil doings. Once Macbeth learns his prophecy to be king, she immediately convinces and persuades Macbeth into following her plan. Towards the end, when the crimes have been committed, Lady Macbeth shows weakness and guilt for her evil deeds.
The Unladylike Lady in Macbeth William Shakespeare's tragedy Macbeth presents in the role of the leading lady an intimidating and selfish Lady Macbeth. Let us in this paper get to the bottom of her character. L.C. Knights in the essay "Macbeth" describes the unnaturalness of Lady Macbeth's words and actions: Thus the sense of the unnaturalness of evil is evoked not only be repeated explicit references ("nature's mischief," "nature seems dead," " 'Tis unnatural, even like the deed that's done," and so on) but by the expression of unnatural sentiments and an unnatural violence of tone in such things as Lady Macbeth's invocation of the "spirits" who will "unsex" her, and her affirmation that she would murder the babe at her breast if she had sworn to do it. (95) Samuel Johnson in The Plays of Shakespeare underscores how ambition by the protagonists leads to detestation on the part of the readers: The danger of ambition is well described; and I know not whether it may not be said in defence of some parts which now seem improbable, that, in Shakespeare's time, it was necessary to warn credulity against vain and illusive predictions.
The simile equates him to a God like force, consolidating his reputation and accomplishment as a noble thane. However, Shakespeare creates suspense by foreshadowing Macbeth’s betrayal, “No more that Thane of Cawdor shall deceive”. The use of dramatic irony is present, as the vanquished, “Thane of Cawdor” was a traitor implying that Macbeth could become an enemy of the state. It alludes to his subsequent corruption as the temptation of power depletes his morality. Flaws in Macbeth’s character are further emphasised throughout and after the witches’ prophesise to Macbeth and Banquo about their future kingship.
The women in this play distort Macbeth's intuition so much that he thinks he is doing the right thing. "... his liberty of free choice is determined more and more by evil inclination and that he can not choose the better course..." (Bloom 55). Even after the deed is done, Lady Macbeth greets her husband and "... her greeting recalls the weird sisters.
slaughter scheme by stating, “We will proceed no further in this business. He hath honored me” (1.7. 31-32) to which Lady Macbeth replies “Wouldst thou have that /Which thou esteem’st the ornament of life, And live a coward in thine own esteem, Letting “I dare not” wait upon “I would,” Like the poor cat i' th' adage?” (1.7. 41-45), his wife persists in being unsatisfied. In fact, such an exclamation only brings about further annoyance and irritation in Lady Macbeth who resorts to mocking Macbeth’s virility by suggesting that he's a "coward".
In the wake of listening to the prescience told by the "wyrd" sisters (the three witches), Macbeth is loaded with need and develops into an aggressive man for expecting the throne, and being delegated as the thane of cawdor. All around the play, the ladies are always associated with evil, right from the earliest starting point of the play, beginning with the "wyrd" sisters. The three witches are indicated as vindictive creatures. They give of a quality like being an evil figure, who controlled each persons 'fate', and likewise, they were women. The agnostic part of the three witches is held with their examination to the Fates and the showcase their disagreeable behavious, for example, making potions.
Firstly, the witches’ prophecy ignited Macbeth 's desire to be king. The temptation that follows Macbeth’s knowledge of the prophecy is a major factor which leads Macbeth to succumb to the evil that leads to his downfall. The witches represent darkness, chaos and conflict, allowing Macbeth to acknowledge his personal dilemma; his hunger for power. Macbeth also admits to himself that he is driven by temptation, "This supernatural soliciting cannot be ill cannot be good." Macbeth tries to justify his bad idea, and goes along with Shakespeare’s technique of using contradictory statements or contrasting to show the unnatural or supernatural beings in the play.