Macbeth was written by Shakespeare in the early 1600s. It is in some aspects a relatively simple play. Like numerous pre-Shakespearean plays it follows a certain structure, the rise and fall of a man. The first part of the play is about Macbethâ€™s rise to power. Near the middle he assumes kingship by killing the current king, Duncan. The rest of the play follows the disintegration of all he has achieved, a process which ends with his death and the installment of new king, Malcolm, which was the old kingâ€™s son. By the end of Shakespeareâ€™s "Macbeth," Lady Macbeth has proven that her imagination is stronger than her will. During the beginning of the play, Lady M had been the iron fist and authority icon for Macbeth.
She was the voice of determination and hardness, yet deep down, she never carried such traits to begin with. She started this ordeal with a negative, bombastic rhetoric, preying on Macbethâ€™s weaknesses in order to egg him on. In no way did she make a positive contribution to Macbeth or to herself. However, Macbeth soon becomes more independent and shows more of his own self-ambition. Eventually, Lady Macbeth begins to show her true, stripped away and "witherâ€™d" nature. Lady Macbethâ€™s vulnerability increases as time passes, and her enthusiasm wanes. Lady Macbeth is mainly responsible for aggravating the struggle between Macbethâ€™s morality, devotion and "vaulting ambition.
- Thesis Statement
- Structure and Outline
- Voice and Grammar
" This duality in Lady Macbethâ€™s character plays a huge role in planting the seed for Macbethâ€™s downfall and eventual demise.Lady Macbeth imagines that she has the capability to be a remorseless and determined villain, but she isnâ€™t anything of the like in reality. She thinks that her will to follow through with her thoughts outweighs Macbethâ€™s determination. Lady Macbeth views her husband as "too full oâ€™ the milk of human kindness/To catch the nearest way," (I-v, 16-17). Within the first act, she deems herself the more committing and authoritative person in this couple.
She claims that "that which rather Macbeth dost fear to do," could be fulfilled if, "I may pour my spirits in thine ear" (I-v, 23-25). She believes matters should be taken into her own hands from the moment she receives the letter about the witchesâ€™ prophecies. Lady Macbeth believes that Macbeth doesnâ€™t have the "spirit" to "catch the nearest way" (I-v, 17). At this moment, she decides that quick action will be the basis of her reasoning and planning. Lady Macbeth intentionally tries to ignore consequence and concentrate on securing Macbethâ€™s future as king of Scotland. She looks to the â€?quickest wayâ€™ as one that may lack rationality, but shortens their path to the throne.
When Lady Macbeth heard Macbeth pondering the many reasons he shouldnâ€™t kill the current king of Scotland, she realized that she was now more committed to the crime than Macbeth was. She scolds him for even having such thoughts, accusing him of being cowardly. Lady Macbeth decides to allude to herself as the mother of a baby. She would have the "nipple pluckâ€™d from his boneless gums/And dashed the brains out" (I-vii, 57-58) if she had promised to do the deed. Her shocking and persuasive effect on Macbeth convinces him that he is "settled," (I-iii, 79). By hearing a woman who seems to be fearless of his anxieties, he is soothed. But even here, however, we begin to catch a glimpse of Lady Macbethâ€™s very unstable mind.
By using such a graphic description, she reflects her straining desperation for Macbethâ€™s commitment. She knows that Macbeth is a strong person, and she must seem stronger to convince him to go along with her. She now has to wear a â€?maskâ€™ of this determined and cold character, creating more distance between her true self and Macbeth.At one point, Lady Macbeth demands the assistance of the supernatural evil forces: "You murdering ministersâ€¦ Come, thick nightâ€¦from the dunnest smoke of hell" (I-vi, 47-50). Being totally rash, Lady Macbeth summons the evil as if she can undermine the power of darkness to her advantage. She asks for the assistance of the evil, implying that she holds no resident evil in her soul.
It must act as an additive to fulfill a transformation. Lady Macbeth is creating, instead of magnifying, wickedness that she must manifest.