• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

What factors contribute to his change in character and which dramatic devices help the audience become aware of this descent into evil?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

In committing Duncan's murder and organising the murder of other influential characters, Macbeth's character changes from good to evil. What factors contribute to his change in character and which dramatic devices help the audience become aware of this descent into evil? The play 'Macbeth' gives the audience plenty of opportunities to consider the reasons for the main character's actions. In this essay I will consider the many factors which contribute to Macbeth's descent into evil; many factors play a pivotal role in deciding his ill-fated future. With his wife's cajoling, and the three witches' foretelling of his future Macbeth, will stop at nothing to gain position as King of Scotland. Macbeth's ambition also drives this same will as well as his feelings of fear and insecurity. The witches and their prophecies are the first major influence on Macbeth's actions. Macbeth is content with his position as Thane of Glamis, until the three witches tell him, "All hail Macbeth, hail to thee Thane of Glamis. All hail Macbeth, hail to thee Thane of Cawdor All hail Macbeth, that shalt be King hereafter." This prophecy startled Macbeth. He believes that his title is still Thane of Glamis; yet here he has just been told that he shall be King. After hearing this Macbeth and his loyal friend Banquo find out that Macdonwald has been sentenced to death for betraying his country, and that King Duncan has named Macbeth Thane of Cawdor. ...read more.

Middle

And this will enable him to commit the murder. As he does not wish to be a coward and ruin his honour as "brave Macbeth". Lady Macbeth believes that Macbeth's downfall is his vaulting ambition "Thou wouldst be great, art not without ambition." Macbeth's ambition is ever present and mentioned by Macbeth himself, "His besetting sin: I have no spur, to prick the sides of my Intent, but only vaulting ambition which o'erleaps itself." At the very start of the play the audience discovers that Macbeth is a brave warrior "For brave Macbeth- well he deserves that name." I believe that Macbeth's ambition could have been stirred up as he is the King's cousin and he did not just want to be seen as a Thane or just a brave warrior he wished to be seen as a greater asset to his country. It is clear to the audience that Lady Macbeth is intent to help Macbeth achieve his ambition we learn this after she reads her letter, in the soliloquy she revels this by saying, "The illness should attend it." Macbeth's ambition also pushes him towards the murder of Duncan in many other ways. Macbeth clearly feels that killing Duncan is an option as he uses soliloquy's often in order to show his true feelings to the audience, "Present fears... ...read more.

Conclusion

At this point the audience become increasingly aware of Macbeth's increasing insecurity and obsession with fear. But Macbeth's fear and insecurity does also lead more to his descent into evil as it leads to more deaths, Macbeth fear of Macduff being a threat to his position as king and also his fear that Banquo's descendants will become King greater drives him into his descent into evil as his fear of these things cause him to kill again and again. In conclusion it is clear that there are many possible reasons why Macbeth may have behaved like he did, committing murders and following his descent into evil but, the killing of Duncan starts an unstoppable chain of events in the play that ends with the murder of Macbeth and the suicide of Lady Macbeth. Macbeth chooses to murder Duncan. Macbeth, in the beginning had all the qualities of an honourable gentleman who could become anything. This is all shattered when his ambition overrides his sense of morality. Although Macbeth is warned as to the validity of the witches prophesies, he is tempted and refuses to listen to reasons from Banquo. When the second set of prophesies Macbeth receives begin to show their faults Macbeth blames the witches for deceiving him with half truths. While the witches are not totally responsible for the actions of Macbeth, they are responsible for introducing the ideas to Macbeth which in turn fired up Macbeth's ambition and led to a disastrous and unnecessary chain of events. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Macbeth section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Macbeth essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    Villain or victim? Is Macbeth a victim of external circumstances or a man solely ...

    4 star(s)

    His reign of terror is all over within a matter of weeks, but within that time he has caused a wave of destruction, terror and misery throughout the whole of Scotland, 'Alas, poor country! Almost afraid to know itself.' (Again, personification here emphasises the scale of the problem within the country.)

  2. By considering the soliloquies, analyse how Macbeth's character changes as the play progresses.

    the Eye fears" meaning that what his mind fears and what he doesn't want to see himself do should and will be done. The main change in Macbeth's character from the previous speech is that he is more certain in his mind as to his actions.

  1. There Are Many Supernatural Elements In "Macbeth". What Effect Do They Have On The ...

    Here they are saying that he will not sleep night or day. His eyelids will be open and they will empty his blood.

  2. This essay will thoroughly canvass the main themes of Hamlet and Macbeth, and will ...

    This is an unquestionable characteristic that is present in both stories, and that keeps the plot flowing.

  1. 'Macbeth is full of highly dramatic scenes. Choose two scenes and explore how Shakespeare ...

    play such as the pun on the word 'rapt' to mean absorbed and enchanted as well as wrapped which means covered. Both meanings of the pun can be associated with Macbeth's involvement with himself and selfishness in his rise to power.

  2. Character Analysis of Macbeth

    The first example of her influencing Macbeth is in Act 1 Scene 5 she explains how he should ''Look like the time'' and ''bear welcome'' in his eyes during the banquet that the King Duncan is to at their home and to ''look like the innocent flower but be the

  1. What is the role of the witches in Macbeth?

    This again implies the mysteriousness of the witches. They know that Macbeth's arrival is imminent. Macbeth enters the dark cavern and insults and abuses the witches. Macbeth clearly shows no fear for the witches by saying "you secret, black and midnight hags, what is't you do". This does show some comparison between Macbeth and Banquo (now dead), and

  2. Macbeth - Do the witches heighten the dramatic impact of the play?

    All hail, Macbeth! That shalt be King hereafter". The witches do not speak about pleasant subjects when ever they speak they do not have pleasant content in them, for example in act four, scene one the second witch says " fillet of a fenny snake, in the cauldron boil and bake, eye of a newt and toe of

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work