Feminist Lens: Macbeth and A Midsummer Night’s Dream In Shakespeare’s plays of Macbeth and A Midsummer Night’s Dream there is a constant shift of power between the two genders. In the play of Macbeth, Lady Macbeth and Macbeth’s gender roles are clearly defined and very traditional. Macbeth is the manly soldier
Lady Macbeth has seen Macbeth's weakness, his lack of manliness. She is too afraid to commit the murder of Duncan, and must assure Macbeth that it is his duty. She accomplished this goal by making fun of him and arousing his jealousy instincts.
Lady Macbeth’s strength of will persists through the murder of King Duncan as it is she who tries to calm Macbeth after committing the crime by declaring confidently that, “a little water clears us of this deed,” (2.2.67). Afterward, however, Lady Macbeth’s strong and ambitious character begins to deteriorate into madness. Her first sign of weakness occurred when she confessed that she could not have killed the king, revealing a natural woman’s feelings, “had he not resembled my father as he slept, I had done’t” (2.2.13-14). Just as ambition has affected her before more so then Macbeth before the crime, the guilt plagues her now more effectively afterward as she desperately tried to wash away the invisible blood from her sin, “Here’s the smell of the blood still: all the perfume of Arabia will not sweeten this little hand,” (5.1.48-49). Lady Macbeth’s
Lady Macbeth, in William Shakespeare’s The Tragedy of Macbeth, is among his most celebrated characters. In the beginning of The Tragedy of Macbeth, she is persistent and ambitious. However, throughout the play she declines and becomes hysterical. Her status among critics varies; but, all agree that Lady Macbeth’s role is
At In Act 1, Scene 7, Lines 56-57, "When you durst do it, then you were a man; And to be more than what you were, you would be so much more the man", Lady Macbeth orchestrates Macbeth’s self-esteem by taunting his manliness when Macbeth doesn’t plan on following through with her plan. Moments later, she tells him how he should act and what he needs to do, in Act 1, Scene 5, Lines 71-75, “When Duncan is asleep...look like the innocent flower, but be the serpent under’t.” She successfully augments Macbeth’s ambition and exhorts him to commit atrocities. After Duncan’s murder, Macbeth no longer values Lady Macbeth’s opinions- his actions are rash and selfish because they are made promptly. Interaction between Lady Macbeth and Macbeth falters since Macbeth is now swept up with erasing his tracks. The two perish as individuals- Macbeth is miserable with guilt caused by cold- blooded Lady Macbeth’s attribution of influence and plan. But instead of comforting her husband and talking him out of murdering more people, Lady Macbeth only gives one feeble attempt.
In perhaps the most pivotal scene in William Shakespeare’s Macbeth, Lady Macbeth’s motives are truly revealed in her manipulation of Macbeth to show how humans have a desire for power and once they get a taste of it, they will go through any lengths to have it, no matter the effect on others. Her lust for power is showcased through how she persuades Macbeth by insulting his masculinity and using emotive language to counter his logical reasoning. This section of the play illustrates the tipping point of each character’s morality with Macbeth having second thoughts about the planned murder and Lady Macbeth diving straight in.
Lady Macbeth: Unsexed and Uncovered Lady Macbeth progresses throughout the play from a seemingly savage and heartless creature to a very delicate and fragile woman. In the beginning of the play, she is very ambitious and hungry for power. She pushes Macbeth to kill Duncan in order to fulfill the witches’ prophecy. In Act I, Scene 6, she asks the gods to make her emotionally strong like a man in order to help her husband go through with the murder plot. She says, “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!” Also, she does everything in her power to convince Macbeth that he would be wrong not to kill Duncan. In Act I,
In Shakespeare play, Macbeth, Lady Macbeth’s character progresses in an interesting manner. Lady Macbeth is made to act as an incentive to Macbeth's immoral actions. Even though Macbeth is generally the person to have a final say before killing someone, Lady Macbeth plays the role of his “sidekick”. She mocks her husband if he worries over a sinful deed (which usually she instructs him to do), saying he would be less of a man if he does not follow through with their plan (I. vii. 56-57). She gives Macbeth a short lecture in deceptiveness when they are planning to kill King Duncan (I. vi. 73-78). She also prepared the daggers for Macbeth to kill Duncan in advance (II. ii. 15-16). Although her husband was still having doubts, she was always ready to go in for the kill. She did not think twice about it or feel any remorse. This shows that Lady Macbeth evolved into looking like a humble and quieter person on the exterior, but being an insane woman and criminal due to the events that have affected her.
Lady Macbeth is a complex and intriguing character in Shakespeare’s play, Macbeth. She is a difficult character to embody as her personality seems split between two sides, one that is pure evil, sly and conniving in contrast to her softer, vulnerable, weak and feminine side. In the play we see her in these two main ways. The reader may feel a certain animosity towards Lady Macbeth throughout the first few acts as her personality appears more and more distasteful, in spite of this towards the end she has a serious breakdown over the guilt that torments her, even in her sleep, regarding her hand in Duncan’s untimely death.
Character Analysis Lady Macbeth can be said to be one of Shakespeare's most famous and frightening female characters. She fulfills her role among the nobility and is well respected, like Macbeth. She is loving, yet very determined that her husband will be king. At the beginning of the play, when she is first seen, she is already plotting the murder of Duncan, showing more strength, ruthlessness, and ambition than Macbeth. She lusts after power and position and then pressures her husband into killing Duncan. Upon receiving the letter with the witches' prophecies from her husband, she begins to think and knowing that Macbeth lacks the courage for something like this, she calls upon the forces of evil to help her do what must be
Lady Macbeth first impression is ambitious, manipulative and very intelligent from the quotation “Thy letters have transported me beyond this ignorant present, and I feel now the future in the instant” which shows us that she has already begun planning for the future. Her lack of scepticism in Macbeth’s letter telling her of the prophecies by the weird sisters despite knowing that the outside the chain of being are evil and dangerous and could lead her astray by lying, implies that she is eager for the prophecies to come true and is an exponent. Even if her husband had never mentioned murder in his letter to her, she drastically started planning the king’s demise as well from the quote “O, never shall that morrow see!” which shows how murderous and determined her mind is. She reveals her deceptive and manipulative side in the quotation “…look like the innocent flower but be a serpent under’t, which tells the reader that she is only putting on the illusion of being good The serpent also has the
Lady Macbeth is one of the most dominant characters in the play Macbeth because of her ambitious, manipulative and deceitful nature. Lady Macbeth’s ambition is her most consuming trait. It is expressed in the quote “Come, you spirits/ that tend on mortal thoughts, unsex me here/and fill me from the crown to the toe topfull/of direst cruelty”(I.v.l.39-42). This famous quote said by Lady Macbeth is about how she wishes to be more like a man so she can kill Duncan herself, which proves that she is willing to take any measures possible to earn success for her and her her husband Macbeth. Additionally, Lady Macbeth is a manipulative character . Her controlling nature is exhibited when she manipulates her husband into killing the king, by saying
Aptly described as "fiendlike" by Prince Malcolm, Lady Macbeth was a major participant in the ruin of Macbeth. She was a woman virtually devoid of human emotions and general scruples. Her lack of principles and mindless ambition made her a proponent of seizing the throne. She goaded her husband into the act of vile murder with the words, "Yet do I fear thy nature. / It is too full o' the milk of human kindness" (Shakespeare 189). Lady Macbeth later said, "When you durst do it [kill Duncan], then you were a man" (Shakespeare 189). Lady Macbeth called Macbeth weak and made light of his manhood in order to influence him towards the murder of Duncan. Without the influence of his wife, Macbeth may have lacked the single minded resolve to go through with the murder of good King Duncan. In addition to pushing Macbeth to commit the murders, Lady Macbeth acted as accomplice that made his succession to the throne possible. Lady Macbeth came up with the plan to frame two innocent guards for the murder of Duncan. "...his two chamberlains [the ones she planned to frame for the murder] / Will I with wine and wassail so
Due to her continuously malicious actions, Lady Macbeth is the true villain in The Tragedy of Macbeth. Prior to act I scene V, Lady Macbeth receives a letter from Macbeth, telling of the Three Weird Sisters’ prophecies. She is immediately taken by ambition and greed. She argues with Macbeth that they should murder the king. She then pleads with her husband, saying “When you durst do it, then you are a man... When Duncan is asleep, his two chamberlains will I with wine and wassail so convince that memory shall be a fume. What then cannot you and I perform upon the unguarded Duncan?” (Act I, scene v). In other words, she is insulting him by saying you are not a man unless you kill Duncan. I can take care of the guards while you kill the king.
In the beginning of the play Lady Macbeth was the evil one in charge, making decisions for her and Macbeth. She was making decisions for her and Macbeth and forcing him to act upon them. She was the mastermind behind the killing of Duncan. In the beginning of the play Lady Macbeth represents evil by her actions and her wanting to be this way. In the beginning she asks the spirits to unsex her and make her more masculine and powerful. She wants to have her Make thick my blood. Stop up th’ access and passage to remorse, that no compunctious visitings of nature” (1.5.47-61). Lady Macbeth wants for her to not feel any remorse and to act upon what she thinks is right. She wants for Duncan to be killed and forces her husband to do so. She is the mastermind behind the killing of Duncan and causes Macbeth to make a complete change in character. Macbeth begins to not listen to her and starts to boss her around. This really affects Lady Macbeth and she does not know how to proceed. By the end of the play Lady Macbeth gives up on trying to control Macbeth and her evil ways. Lady Macbeth realizes that Macbeth is crazy and she can not control what he does. She then decides that the situation she is in with Macbeth is so bad that she has end her life. Her death is a defeat to her controlling evil ways.