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Act 2 Scene 2 is packed with tension. Shakespeare creates this tension in a variety of ways. The first way in which Shakespeare does this is by opening the scene with Lady Macbeth's soliloquy.

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17/12/09 Heba Shaikh English Literature Coursework Act 2 Scene 2 is packed with tension. Shakespeare creates this tension in a variety of ways. The first way in which Shakespeare does this is by opening the scene with Lady Macbeth's soliloquy. This is one example of Shakespeare's techniques used to create tension and excitement, for he uses many other dramatic devices and dialogue. Shakespeare carries on the tension by having only two characters on stage because it amplifies and exaggerates on their emotion which creates tension. Macbeth and Lady Macbeth both have a similar evil spirit, which is revealed throughout the second act. Lady Macbeth is much more wicked and cruel than her husband. The tension increases dramatically when we see Lady Macbeth pacing about in a nervous but excited state, awaiting Macbeth's return increases the tension dramatically. In Act 2, scene 2, the murder of King Duncan takes place. The audience should be on the edge of their seats by now, wondering if Macbeth will actually have the nerve to murder king Duncan. ...read more.


Macbeth appears to be losing his mind, whilst Lady Macbeth remains evil, cold, calculating and in control. The audience is scared of what's going to happen to Macbeth when the thanes discover that king Duncan is dead. The close relationship between the audience and Macbeth makes us feel the anxiety that Macbeth is feeling. This scene creates anticipation and dramatic tension among the audience. In addition, tension is created by having the characters keep running on and off stage which creates chaos, agitation and anxiety. The effect of one person just being on the stage is the best way to allow the audience to discover someone's thoughts and feelings by hearing them tell about their inner feelings and motivations. This is true because no one can understand how someone is truly feeling or what someone is thinking without listening to that person. For this reason, William Shakespeare utilizes the tactic of dramatic soliloquies. For example in this quote "Who's there? What ho!" it symbolizes that Macbeth is scared that he might get caught which creates tension because everything was happening very quickly with a lot of chaos. ...read more.


It's given that in the quote "Sleep no more! Macbeth does murder sleep. "It means the voice is telling the world to no longer sleep because it is unsafe - Macbeth is murdering King Duncan while he is sleeping. The voice is also foreshadowing that Macbeth will not be able to sleep in the future because of what he has done. This increases tension because the audiences are now wondering if Macbeth will ever be able to live without guilt. In conclusion, the audiences at the end are concerned for Macbeth. The audience wishes he hasn't killed King Duncan. The audience expects more tension in further scenes. In Act 2 scene 2 it is the most violent and intense part of Macbeth although we do not actually witness the murder of King Duncan. It is interesting that Shakespeare chooses to have Macbeth kill Duncan offstage which creates tension. The audience can only guess why he wrote the scene that way, Shakespeare wanted to focus not on the murder but on Macbeth's reaction to it; the bloody details supplied by the audience's imaginations will be much worse than anything that could be done onstage. In my opinion, making Macbeth unpredictable clearly made the audience more interested which again creates tension. ...read more.

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