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Discuss how Shakespeare creates tension in Act 2 Scene 2 of Macbeth.

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Introduction

Discuss how Shakespeare creates tension in Act 2 Scene 2 of Macbeth. Macbeth is one of Shakespeare's most dramatic tragedies, making the most tensed work that he's ever done. The play was written during the reign of King James 1st, at a time where England was not an industrial, scientific and urban society as it is now, therefore the themes of the book have striking relevance to the time, however may be considered to have a certain unnaturalness by the modern audience. Witchcraft was a widely believed concepts, also King James felt threatened by them which resulted in ruthless killing of wrongly accused women. Macbeth is a noble warrior with great acknowledgment for his significant contribution to wars, however influenced by ambitions of him and his wife, Lady Macbeth, along with three eccentric witches that escalate immoral attributes leading to ghastly murders. Dramatic tension is a vital aspect to the ways in which scenes are conducted and as this play was written when Shakespeare was at the height of his power consequently it is integrated in the play very well. Act 2 Scene 2 is a remarkable part of the play, compelling, as it does, the audience sympathize with the cold-blooded murder Macbeth. ...read more.

Middle

This augments the amount of dramatic tension as a result of the increase in suspense, and is further supported by the pace of the scene by short sentences. The effects on the Jacobean could be that they are more sympathetic to the condition of Macbeth because of his religious reference and how guilty he feels where as for the modern audience the sense of evil is surely intensified but it doesn't dictate the events; there is no tragedy at all as he is not an unintelligent character and has the sense to create a distinction between the right and wrong paths, therefore it is entirely his mistake that require no sympathy. Moreover, the Jacobean audience believes in supernatural witches and are most likely to blame them it is possible build up more hatred and fear of the witched internally leading to significant amount of dramatic impact and tension on them. Shakespeare also creates dramatic tension through a good use of diction in Macbeth's dialogue. He uses polysyllabic Latin-like vocabulary "multitudinous" and "incarnadine" which contrasts with monosyllabic "green one red". This implies the enormity of his offence and how greatly he's trying to fight inorder to get over it despite knowing that nothing will "wash this blood" compelling him to build hatred for himself. ...read more.

Conclusion

The structure is also relevant to the building up of tension however not really that effective compared to language. A much like two fold structure is shown in the scene were we see both his aggression for killing Duncan as well as the regression. Another example is Lady Macbeth's who provokes ill-feelings of greed to overthrow Duncan because of the lust for power and Macbeth's fear of the adverse situation he may have to face after. The structure is specifically designed to create sympathy for Macbeth as the change in the feel of the scene from dreadful to regretful which makes the scenes unexpected hence increase the tension. To conclude, I would Shakespeare's conducts the scene that has a social and moral significance to the time it was published. However the effects seems to deteriorate within the modern audience because of the type of environment everyone experiences. Shakespeare uses many different techniques to increase tension and successfully does. The most effective way in my opinion was the extensive use of language that has many symbolic meanings, which dramatically increase the tension in the scene as well as adds very appropriate morals. The play was very significant to the time where many innocent women were being killed because of witchcraft and this scene unfortunately does signify that however the tension in the scene for the Jacobean audience was probably a lot. ...read more.

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