Write about the way women are presented in ‘Macbeth’ and ‘Of Mice and Men’
Both ‘Of Mice and Men’ and ‘Macbeth’ present their female characters in relations to their husbands. In ‘Macbeth’ at the beginning of Act 1 scene 5, Lady Macbeth is shown as a strong and powerful woman, who loves her husband dearly. Lady Macbeth and Macbeth are clearly in love as he addresses her as, “my dearest partner in greatness”. The word “partner” suggests equality, loyalty and trust, the word “greatness” shows he thinks very highly of his wife. We know this when Macbeth has an encounter with the witches and she was the first person he chose to tell about his prospects for being king. During this time witches were seen as evil, devious demons that were not to be trusted and should be exterminated like vermin. The audience would have been shocked about Macbeth and Lady Macbeth’s reactions to the witches. Their show of love and intimacy would have often been unusual due to the fact that marrying for love would have been rare especially during the Jacobean era as most women married because of family arrangements rather than love. Lady Macbeth knows her husband very well and does not trust him to proceed with the prospect of murdering Duncan. This is shown when Lady Macbeth says, ‘I fear thy nature. It is too full o’ the milk of human kindness’. This reveals that Lady Macbeth thinks he is too cowardly and weak; she believes he is too kind hearted and lacks courage to kill the king.
In Act 1 scene 7 Lady Macbeth is again shown in her relationship with Macbeth and Shakespeare uses contrast to portray them as quite different. Again she is presented through her words. At the time of Shakespeare, marriages in contrast to contemporary re...
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...nic. He has killed or harmed every living organism that he has touch and petted. This is made evident when Curley’s wife “struggles violently under his hands. Her feet battered on the hay and she writhed to be free”. Steinbeck gives a powerful visual image by using effectual verbs like battered and writhed. However, Steinbeck does not concentrate on the death itself but the aftermath of her inevitable death. Steinbeck makes the death of Lennie the main event for a finale. Steinbeck uses the female protagonists’ death to ready us for the consequences. This is similar to the way Shakespeare doesn’t give a lot of detail on how Lady Macbeth died but the battle yet to take place after her death. They both use the female protagonists deaths to get us ready for the death of the main characters Macbeth and Lennie.
Steinbeck-Of Mice and Men
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