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The Character of Macbeth in William Shakespeare's Play

analytical Essay
2138 words
2138 words
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The Character of Macbeth in William Shakespeare's Play The Shakespearian play ‘Macbeth’ is one the four greatest tragedies, encompassing witchcraft, crime and punishment, evil temptations, guilt, remorse and above all, greed for power. ‘Macbeth’ was probably written in 1606 when Shakespeare was in his early 40s. His other three great tragedies had already been written, and his reputation was established. King James ruled England, having assumed the throne when Queen Elizabeth died in 1603. Aspects of ‘Macbeth’ seem to be calculated to flatter King James. James was known to be a fan of witchcraft and was also a descendant of the historical Banquo. The vision of the line of kings that Macbeth sees in Act IV implies that the Stuart dynasty (James' line) will continue to rule indefinitely. At the time when Shakespeare wrote ‘Macbeth’, England had very different opinions as to modern times. The role of women in society was significantly low and they were much less powerful than men, who held all public and political votes. There were distinct gender roles and a women’s sphere of legitimate power was located in the home. Women were not allowed to act on stage and so the presence of a ‘women’ on stage assuming control outside the domestic sphere was striking. During Shakespeare’s time women were also thought to assume power illegitimately through evil forces, which is why Lady Macbeth is presented as an evil and cruel woman yet at some points, she is portrayed as pitiful and pathetic. Many women were accused of being witches and were also executed during the reign of James I. Manhood in Macbeth is tied to ideas of strength, power, physic... ... middle of paper ... ... that one day his children would rule Scotland, Macbeth felt threatened and ordered murderers to ‘butcher’ Banquo and Fleance. On hearing about Macduff’s flight to England, another threat to his position according to the witches’ was that no man of woman born could harm him. This prophecy made Macbeth keen on fighting with Macduff. However, Macduff proved that he could still murder and overpower him. We can see that Macbeth is responsible for many crimes and how power hungry he was. He has taken so many lives just to maintain his leadership. In the course of the play, Macbeth repeatedly misunderstood the guilt that he was suffering as being simply a matter of apprehension. His characteristic way of dealing with his guilt was to face it directly by committing more misdeeds and this of course, only led to more insanity.

In this essay, the author

  • Analyzes the character of macbeth in william shakespeare's play, which encompasses witchcraft, crime and punishment, evil temptations, guilt, remorse, and greed for power.
  • Analyzes how james assumed the throne when queen elizabeth died in 1603. macbeth's vision of the line of kings implies that the stuart dynasty will continue to rule indefinitely.
  • Explains that the role of women in society was significantly low and they were much less powerful than men, who held all public and political votes. the women's sphere of legitimate power was located in the home.
  • Analyzes how women assumed control outside the domestic sphere during shakespeare's time. lady macbeth is presented as an evil and cruel woman yet at some points, she is portrayed as pitiful and pathetic.
  • Analyzes how lady macbeth's view of her husband is weak, cowardly and timid. he is too kind and caring to commit evil but does not lack ambition.
  • Analyzes how shakespeare's "macbeth" focuses on the changing character and his increasing greed for power, which causes the character to deteriorate from a man with nobility and good intentions.
  • Analyzes how the audience decides whether macbeth is influenced by witches' prophecies, the manipulating of his wife, or his own ambition.
  • Analyzes how shakespeare introduces the witches and the elizabethans believed strongly in the supernatural, and associated the devil with this.
  • Analyzes how macbeth and banquo meet the witches and tell him that he will have two changes of title.
  • Analyzes how macbeth receives this information with disbelief, reminding the witches that he is already thane of glamis and unaware at this point of their prophecies are wrong.
  • Analyzes how shakespeare uses soliloquies to reveal a character's inner thoughts, hidden feelings, and utmost intentions in "macbeth."
  • Analyzes how the above quote is part of macbeth's speech, which is said in soliloquy. it implies that he already has plans of evil towards duncan who is obviously the obstacle preventing him from taking the throne
  • Analyzes how lady macbeth possesses ‘fiend like’ qualities right from her first appearance in the play even though she is not yet ‘queen.
  • Analyzes how the woman condemns 'the milk of human kindness' in her husband and is the driving force towards the murder of duncan and the denying of her womanly nature.
  • Analyzes how lady macbeth thinks that her husband is too good a man to be able to become king. she seizes the opportunity to plan his murder.
  • Analyzes how lady macbeth is convinced that her plans to kill duncan will work, but he still has doubts and is hesitant over the situation.
  • Analyzes how macbeth and lady macbeth carry out the murder together as 'cruel ministers' and cover up by making it seem like it was one of the king's guards who killed him.
  • Analyzes how macbeth's first impressions on the audience are heroic, brave, and loyal, but these qualities disintegrate as the play progresses. the murder of duncan is the initial sign of greed for power in
  • Analyzes how macbeth downplays the importance of their meeting with the witches', but banquo warns him about the evil that could come of the prophecy.
  • Analyzes how macbeth feels guilty about the murder and his inner feelings are shown through this phantasm.
  • Analyzes how macbeth sees his ghost, which only he can see, after banquo's murder at their first banquet as king and queen.
  • Analyzes how macbeth portrays himself as a ‘butcher’ and ‘cruel minister’. he orders his murderers to murder macduff’s family for his disloyalty.
  • Analyzes how lady macbeth reappears in act 5 as a weak, guilt-ridden woman, broken down from her former confident self.
  • Analyzes how macbeth's tortured imagination is recalling memories from the past that she cast from her mind. she is afraid of the very things she summoned previously.
  • Analyzes how lady macbeth imitates his words concerning his bloodstained hands and how all of the oceans could never wash them clean.
  • Analyzes how she recalls conversations with macbeth consoling him from banquo s ghost. she repeats the phrase "to bed" five times, though her sleep is tormented and so will never sleep peacefully again.
  • Analyzes how macbeth repeats what she has said to her but is also reassuring herself in her madness. psychoanalytical audiences would say that the source of this change is due to repression of feelings, memories or trauma.
  • Analyzes how lady macduff possesses typical female attributes and is a mother figure.
  • Analyzes how the woman represents all the good people murdered by macbeth. she loves her family and is distressed at her husband's departure.
  • Analyzes how macbeth's second encounter with the witches confirms that he will have no invasion.
  • Analyzes how the third apparition informs macbeth that he will rule scotland ‘’until great birnam wood to high dunsinane hill shall come against him’’.
  • Analyzes how the witches' prophecies have made macbeth more steadfast in his actions. he is prepared to fight macduff because he knows that no man born of woman can kill him.
  • Analyzes how shakespeare added short scenes to create dramatic tension while everyone was preparing for battle. macbeth is victorious at the start of the battle by killing lord siward, but macduff was less successful.
  • Analyzes how the witches' prophecies seemed impossible, but macduff was not a man ‘’of woman born’’, so he murders macbeth.
  • Analyzes how macbeth's ambition conspires with unholy forces to commit evil deeds, which generate fear, guilt, and even more horrible crimes.
  • Analyzes how macbeth is a 'butcher' when he murders duncan, the present king on the commands of his wife.
  • Analyzes how macbeth is the source of power in the murder of duncan. in her sleepwalking scene, she utters her remorse and talks about her blood stained hands.
  • Analyzes how macduff's flight to england was a threat to his position according to the witches' prophecy that no man of woman born could harm him. macbeth was responsible for many crimes and how power hungry he was.
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