Macbeth Motifs

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When it comes down to it, humans are mammals, and there are some animalistic traits that every mammal shares. The story of Macbeth by Shakespeare includes a theme that is the epitome of a trait that all mammals share, weak versus strong. Through the use of metaphors including birds, the symbolism of Macbeth as an owl throughout the story, and the juxtaposition between birds, weak versus strong is represented by the motif of birds in Macbeth. Birds are incorporated into other literary elements that Shakespeare utilizes, showing the true depth of his writing. Metaphors allow the reader to paint a picture of written words referencing images that they are familiar with. Like any other animal, there is a hierarchy of strength and therefore…show more content…
When Lady Macduff tells her son that “thou’dst never fear the net nor lime, the pitfall nor the gin,” he responds with a question of why he should because “poor birds they are not set for”, meaning that because he would be such a weak bird, hunters would have no want for him (4.2.36-37). Just after making this point, the defenseless son of Macduff is murdered by the king Macbeth, making the reader question what kind of tyrant Macbeth has come to be. The use of birds in Macbeth by Shakespeare is used to develop the theme of weak versus strong when they are used in metaphors, when Macbeth is represented by a bird throughout the story, and by the juxtaposition of the weak and strong birds. The acts committed by the characters aroused emotions in the audience because they were not so unrealistic that the audience could not relate to them, they represented the mammal in humans, the animal inside of all of us that we attempt to constrain. Birds are essential to create this unsettling feeling because their rustic, animal-like nature is no unlike the animalistic traits we try to hide, which allows the reader or audience to relate with the

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