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

Macbeth Coursework

Extracts from this document...


Macbeth Coursework The witches present modern directors with great difficulties. Consider the role of the witches and suggest how they can be made as successful for a modern audience as they would have been for a contemporary audience. In Shakespeare's day, the thought of the witches scared people as they thought that they had witches living among them, casting spells on them and trying to do them harm. This fear was fuelled by the King at the time, James I, who believed strongly in the Divine right of Kings. This meant that he thought he derived his authority from God and so could not be held responsible for his actions by any authorities on earth. He felt that if he was God's representative on earth, then Satan must also have one. He wrote a book on demonology, which talked about witches powers and origins. Due to this, it would have been very easy to make the witches seem frightening to an audience of that time. Nowadays however, people do not believe in witches and are not as superstitious. This makes it much more difficult for a director to make them as frightening as Shakespeare intended them to be. ...read more.


Shakespeare made the witches speech seem confusing by using oxymorons and language which is difficult to understand. "When the hurly-burly's done, When the battle's lost, and won." This would confuse people, as it does not make much sense. This would make the witches seem more frightening as people are sometimes frightened of things that they don't understand. Shakespeare also used language to make the witches seem frightening. When the witches speak, they do not speak like woman were supposed to at the time. Instead they used swear words and were very rude and cruel to people. An example of this is when they are talking to the sailor's wife in Act 1 scene 3. The first witch says: "A sailors wife had chestnuts in her lap And munch'd, and munch'd, and munch'd. 'Give me', quoth I. 'Aroint thee, witch,' the rump fed runnion cries." This would have made them frightening, as people would not be used to this behaviour from a woman and it was not generally socially acceptable. The fact that the witches played a main part in killing Duncan would have scared the audience as the King was the most important member of society and if they had the ability to trick Macbeth into killing him then they would be capable of doing other evil deeds, possibly even worse than killing the King. ...read more.


Another method a modern day director could use is to make the witches part of society and have jobs where they can get close to people and their families, such as a doctor or a midwife. This would make it more frightening as they could get close to people and still remain trusted. This is the kind of thing that still scares people today due to articles on the news about paedophiles and murderers who get close to their victims first. Another method which could be used is to make their environment cold and desolate. Rooms they are in could have dead plants, no windows and dark damp walls. This would give the impression that they bring death and darkness with them wherever they go, making them seem more evil and sinister to the audience. They could also act cruelly to each other. This would make them seem more evil as they are even cruel to people who they are 'friends' with making them seem like they do not care for anyone other than themselves and are incapable of love or proper interaction with others. In conclusion, a modern director would have a harder job making the audience scared of the witches. They would have to use more psychological methods to scare them and adapt the witches' characters so that they are more relevant to modern society. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Directing 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 GCSE Directing Macbeth essays

  1. Direct a production of Shakespeare's play "Macbeth" focusing in on act 1 scene 1.

    They also used a drumbeat that speeded up as the camera moved across land and into the dumping ground this put extreme strain on what would happen next. As for my three witches, I want them to be come across as being gruesome, ghastly and grotesque.

  2. The presentation of the witches in the opening scenes is crucial to the atmosphere ...

    In this version scene (i) is not set in a filthy, foggy heath but in an underground car park. In relation to the BBC version it is not a nice place and is isolated. This scene has no frightening landscape and does awaken much curiosity in the viewer.

  1. Analyse each Directors choice of setting for the three films (all versions of Macbeth) ...

    We can't understand what they are saying because they have been directed to whisper and mumble. The speech is made to sound like the chanting of a spell.

  2. The play Macbeth is a tragedy, dealing with the downfall and death of the ...

    We are told that in the third scene the location is something of an open place described as a heath. A heath is like moor land with lots in hospitable and away from hyalinisation.

  1. Can One of the dilemmas facing a modern day director in the presentation of ...

    The use of white is important, as it can be symbolic of death in Japanese culture a contrast to European cultures where it would symbolise hope and good. The media used is a black and white movie that increases the contrasts between the white "evil spirit" and the human characters which are in observed in darker tones.

  2. Act 1 scene 1 of "Macbeth" the Scottish tragedy.

    the way they mumble under there breath. Polanski has also tried to put the witches across a being poor. He does this by dressing them in rags, instead of normal female garments. During this scene Polanski has shown the witches burying symbolic objects.

  1. Shakespeare coursework - Macbeth. The supernatural is vital to the plot and the actions ...

    In Macbeth the two witches' scenes that I am studying are full of mystery and confusion. A paradox, "Fair is foul and foul is fair" is used throughout the play. This is also an alliteration. In my version of Macbeth I am going to begin with thunder and lightening to

  2. How effective an adaptation of the play Macbeth is the film ‘Macbeth on the ...

    This is so that people now can understand the plays, and can understand the meanings behind the plays, because they have been put into a modern context that we can relate to. Some ideas are not actually just translated; they are completed changed, or some are added.

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