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The Female Characters In An Inspector Calls And Macbeth

2257 words - 9 pages

Macbeth and An Inspector calls were plays written in different time periods. The central female character in An Inspector Calls is Sheila and the central female character in Macbeth is Lady Macbeth. Sheila Birling comes from a well-known, wealthy factory owner and Lady Macbeth is wife of a thane, named Macbeth. Both of the plays show a certainty of evil, but the central female characters in Macbeth and An Inspector Calls differ but are rarely shown as similar.

In the beginning of Macbeth in Act 1 Scene 5, Shakespeare presents Lady Macbeth as a ravenous person for power, ‘unsex me here And fill me from the crown to the toe topfull Of direst cruelty’. Focusing on the word ‘unsex’, we can infer within context how she is requesting evil to get all her femininity away and make her a cruel queen. We can also see that Lady Macbeth is a personification and her power of evil as she seeks for power. I find this interesting because her aggression on removing her feminine behaviour is seen by her asking evil spirits. As well as this, the way she seeks for evil is interesting because linking to another piece of evidence in the same scene she says, ‘And take my milk for gall’. Focusing on the word ‘gall’, we can see how she wants to have a very bold behaviour when she becomes crowned.

In the beginning of An Inspector Calls in Act 1, Priestley presents Sheila as a forceful person, ‘(cutting in) Why should you? He’s finished with you. He says it’s one of us now.’ Analysing the words ‘us now’, we can see how Sheila talks about responsibility, however, by looking at the stage directions we can see how Sheila changes her character from being questionable to targeting her father and saying, ‘He’s finished with you.’ I find this interesting because I can see how Sheila interrupts her father’s speaking and pointing out that The Inspector has finished with him. As well as this I find it interesting that Sheila talks about responsibility by using the collective term ‘us’.

In the middle of Macbeth in Act 3 Scene 2, Shakespeare shows Lady Macbeth as a evil person who awaits calmly for the wrong things Macbeth and herself do to gain power, ‘Should be without regard; what’s done, is done.’ Examining the words ‘what’s done, is done,’ we can see how Lady Macbeth smoothly acts for the murder she was part of. Although she used Macbeth to seek for power since she mad Macbeth kill Duncan, we can see how she thinks what they have done will be stated as ‘done’. I find this interesting because I like the way Lady Macbeth calmly lives with an evil accomplishment in her life, along with Macbeth who was manipulated to kill King Duncan.

In the middle of An Inspector calls in Act 2, Priestley presents Sheila as a desirous yet powerful person to seek for the truth, ‘I’m staying here until I know why that girl killed herself.’ Observing this quotation, we can see how Sheila is curious to know the truth about Eva Smith’s death; her power is shown by the true answers she is...

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