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Lady Macbeth In William Shakespeare's Macbeth

1797 words - 7 pages

Shakespeare manipulates the audience’s opinions on whom was most responsible for the death of Duncan in many ways, I feel he does this to create question and surprise to the play. Shakespeare leads you along one path of thought, to then divert your thoughts onto another. Many people have different opinions and interpretations to this play; A.C Bradley once wrote “Lady Macbeth is the most commanding and perhaps the most awe-inspiring figure that Shakespeare drew. Sharing, as we have seen, certain traits with her husband she is at once clearly distinguished from him by an inflexibility of will, which appears to hold imagination, feeling, and conscience completely in check. To her the prophecy of things that will be becomes instantaneously the determination that they shall be:
‘Glamis thou art, and Cawdor, and shalt be
That thou art promised’.
She knows her husband's weakness, how he scruples 'to catch the nearest way' to the object he desires; and she sets herself without a trace of doubt or conflict to counteract this weakness.”
In his book Shakespearean Tragedy he explores this first thought into more detail and to how he believes Shakespeare manipulates the audience’s opinions.
In my own opinion Shakespeare manipulates our train of thoughts like Lady Macbeth did to Macbeth in the play. Lady Macbeth is probably one of the most influential characters in all of Shakespeare’s plays. Its appearance vs. reality throughout the play; the way Shakespeare goes against the context of 17th century Britain. In 17th century Britain things were much different than things are today; women had few rights and people then. This belief is much against the play of Macbeth, so what Shakespeare did was try to change people’s views which caused great upset. Between 1603 and 1606 in which time Macbeth was wrote, King James the first of England/ the sixth of Scotland was ruler. Macbeth is all about kingship and loyalty, which were extremely important to King James as he had previously survived an assassination attempt after being betrayed before and he was not going to risk this happening again. His father was also murdered and his mother had been executed as a traitor. So this play runs along those lines of what happened in this time. The play is also related to The Gunpowder Plot, which involved false appearances and treachery, which was involved greatly throughout the play as Lady Macbeth says “ Look like the innocent flower , but be the serpent under’t.” This creates a false appearance throughout the play. The way Lady Macbeth acts on the outside and who she really is is two totally different things. You think when Macbeth calls her “my dearest partner of greatness” you expect her to be the perfect, down-to-earth wife who doesn’t influence her husband in any way, but maybe she’s hiding from what a horrible person she truly is. No matter which way you look at it, if she tries to act like someone she’s not, and the truth is always told in the end, which is...

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