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Macbeth - the dilemma of whether to kill the King or not.

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Introduction

Macbeth Essay In the play ?Macbeth? by William Shakespeare, the character of Macbeth struggle with his conscience. The internal struggle within Macbeth regarding whether or not to kill the king causes his dilemma and this is further exaggerated through the central concerns of the battle of good and evil; the fall of man; equivocation and loyalty vs. ambition. Shakespeare engages our sympathy for Macbeth through the use of several expositions which effectively portray the dilemma that Macbeth faces. One way through which the dilemma is created is through the witches prophecies. Until this point Macbeth has not even considered becoming king and he is introduced as a brave and valiant soldier who is trusted by the king. Macbeth is initially a very noble and good character but later on in the play we realise that his obsession with power turns him into an evil character. Macbeth is told by the witches that he will gain three titles: ?All hail Macbeth? Thane of Glamis All hail Macbeth? Thane of Cawdor All hail Macbeth, that shalt be kind hereafter? The witches? three prophecies are central to the downfall of Macbeth. ...read more.

Middle

Macbeth, great warrior though he is, is ill equipped for the mental consequences of crime and this creates sympathy for hi In the beginning of the play, the audience are naturally drawn to Macbeth?s character as he is portrayed as a loyal soldier and patriotic towards his king and country and this creates sympathy towards him. Macbeth states that: ?The service and loyalty I owe. In doing it, pays itself. Your highness? part is to receive our duties.? Macbeth is a good and courageous man as he fought for the king who regards him as ?noble?. However this image of Macbeth does not last long as he soon succumbs to his dilemma and kills Duncan. This is an example of dramatic irony as although Macbeth is addressing the king very politely and respectfully, we know his true intention is to murder Duncan and gain the throne. Even Macbeth understands that his flaw is ?vaulting ambition which overleaps itself.? This situation is relatable to the reader as the temptation of great power is difficult to refuse and this creates sympathy. Macbeth struggles with the decision of whether or not to kill Duncan, as he is torn between his hunger for power and moral responsibility, and thus the sympathy of the audience is further evoked. ...read more.

Conclusion

He speaks in poetry to illustrate the idea that life is brief and each person?s life is very insignificant. He does not express any grief which is very unusual considering his wife has just passed away. Macbeth also comments that he has forgotten what it feels like to be scared which emphasises how evil he has become. In the battle Macbeth is lured into a false sense of security by the apparitions and he believes that he cannot be defeated. On realising the true meaning of the prophecy he realises that he has been tricked by the witches and he is killed. The battle of good and evil is represented by Macduff and Macbeth respectively and ultimately Shakespeare makes good triumph over evil. We may feel sympathetic towards Macbeth as his actions were ultimately down to bad circumstances and bad decisions. Overall the moral dilemma faced by Macbeth is effectively conveyed through the creative use of dramatic irony and the effective portrayal of the central concerns of the play. Shakespeare successfully engages the readers sympathy for Macbeth through the exposition and the means through which he faces the dilemma are very clear. ...read more.

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