Presentation on theme: "Macbeth. Act I Macbeth meets the witches in Act I and is immediately tempted by their prophecies. Both speak in contradiction: Witches with the."— Presentation transcript:
Act I Macbeth meets the witches in Act I and is immediately tempted by their prophecies. Both speak in contradiction: Witches with the prophecy “Fair is foul and foul is fair.” Macbeth in Scene three when speaking with Banquo about the battle “So foul and fair a day I have not seen.” These contradictions link them
By the end of Act I Macbeth is not a good man, but he is not a evil either. He is TEMPTED by the prophecies, however he does have doubts. He is inability to stand up to his wife’s ability to manipulate him brings on his down fall.
Lady Macbeth Shakespeare presents Lady Macbeth as a very powerful character. This is an unusual characterization for female characters of this time period. Through her, and her behavior, we explore the theme of Masculinity and cruelty. Shakespeare, and his audience at the Globe would associate cruelty with men.
This is evidenced by several of Lady Macbeth’s and Macbeth’s statements throughout the play. “Come, you spirits That tend on mortal thoughts, unsex me here, and fill me from the crown to the toe top-full of direst cruelty.” “Bring forth men-children only, For they undaunted mettle should compose Nothing but males.”
ACT II The appearance of Fleance (Banquo’s son) is a reminder of the witches’ prophecy. Banquo’s knowledge of the witches’ prophecy makes him a potential friend and a potential enemy. If Macbeth succeeds in killing Duncan, Fleance will be in danger.
Duncan’s Chamber This is a hidden area where the murder of Duncan, the guards and a future death will take place. The audience at the Globe would not actually see these killings, however, all who enter this chamber emerge powerfully changed.
Irony After the murder of Duncan, Lady Macbeth tells Macbeth “A little water clears us of the deed. How easy it is then.” Ironically, they are both unable to wash away the guilt of the murder.
After Macbeth murders Duncan, strange things happen in the atmosphere and in nature. Duncan’s horses eat one another and an owl kills a falcon. These strange occurrences cast a menacing shadow over Macbeth’s coronation. By killing Duncan, Macbeth releases chaos among Scotland—The good, benevolent king is replaced by a tyrant.
ACT III During this act, Macbeth sinks even lower into madness. He arranges the murder of his best friend, and his son in order to insure that no one will find out that he and his wife have killed the king.
The Banquet This is simultaneously the high point of Macbeth’s reign and the beginning of his downfall. High point: all are celebrating his coronation Downfall: he is haunted by Banquo’s ghost and appears to be insane in front of his subjects.
It is appropriate that Banquo’s ghost and not Duncan’s haunts Macbeth. He also heard the prophecies but took no action to further his own interests. Shakespeare’s message is that ambition does not require bloodshed.
ACT IV In this scene Macbeth descends into complete madness. When he murders Macduff’s family this act of violence is seen as the worst. It is not done for political gain or to silence an enemy, it is strictly done out of malice.
Cruelty and Masculinity Once again in this act this theme is explored. When Macduff is told that Macbeth has killed his family his reaction is to weep. Malcolm states to “Dispute it like a man.” Macduff’s reply is “But I must also feel it like a man.”
Shakespeare’s commentary on masculinity here is that Macduff is truly a man and a human being. It is appropriate for Macduff to weep and it in no way effects his masculinity.
ACT V The resolution of the play takes place in 8 short scenes. Lady Macbeth falls into madness and Macbeth’s downfall is complete.
Sleepwalking Both Macbeth and Lady Macbeth sleepwalk during the play. Sleep is associated with innocence and inability to sleep is associated with guilt. Both Macbeth and Lady Macbeth are unable to sleep after the murder of Duncan. “Macbeth doth murder sleep.”
Irony Ironically, Lady Macbeth believes that she has a spot of blood of on her hands. During Act V she cannot wash away the imagined spot of blood “Out, damned spot, out, I say!” She cannot wash away the guilt of her crimes.
Witches The witches have much power over the events in the play. Duncan’s murder Banquo’s murder Their prophecies truly come to fruition
Birnum Wood marches on Dunsinane (Malcolm’s men camouflage themselves with a bough from a tree in the woods) (Malcolm’s men camouflage themselves with a bough from a tree in the woods) No man of woman born can harm Macbeth. (Macduff is actually born of a C-section. “Macduff was from his mother’s womb untimely ripped.”
Tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow… This speech, given by Macbeth immediately after his knowledge that his wife has killed herself, is a reflection of his hopelessness. Life has no meaning. However, if we are to take them at face- value, then his actions truly “signify nothing” and they are meaningless rather than evil.
Or…. It could be a commentary by Shakespeare about his theater and how the events on stage have signified nothing. Remember the Gunpowder plot and his father’s involvement. This could be Shakespeare’s way of covering himself.
Macbeth’s Death Macbeth’s death comes as somewhat of a relief. He is not a sympathetic hero—more so a tyrant. He is truly a tragic hero. His ambition causes him to take action that ultimately brings on his downfall. When he kills Duncan his virtue is gone. Theme: Ambition must be checked to maintain order.