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Discuss Shakespeare's Presentation Of Lady Macbeth In Act 1 Scene 5 and Act 5 Scene 1 of "Macbeth" - Account For The Changes and Differences You Notice and How A Contemporary As Well As A Modern Audience Might Respond To These Scenes.

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Introduction

Discuss Shakespeare's Presentation Of Lady Macbeth In Act 1 Scene 5 and Act 5 Scene 1 of "Macbeth". Account For The Changes and Differences You Notice and How A Contemporary As Well As A Modern Audience Might Respond To These Scenes In the play "Macbeth", Lady Macbeth is a character that plays an integral role throughout the play. During the play she undergoes a significant character change that ultimately leads to her death. In act 1 scene 5 Lady Macbeth enters Macbeth's castle with a letter. You can tell that she gets very excited about the fact that Macbeth has become Thane of Cawdor. She also seems to get excited about the fact that "the weird sisters" said that Macbeth was to be king. You can see that she is happy about this because she says, "Thou wouldst be great". This means that she wants him to be great so she can be great aswell. She then tries to work out how Macbeth would achieve the goal of becoming king, and whether he would use unfair methods. She says, " Wouldst not play false and yet wouldst wrongly win." This means that Macbeth wouldn't cheat or deceive, but would accept what was given to him unfairly. ...read more.

Middle

She then gives a sign that she will never be able to get rid of her guilt, when she says, "All the perfumes of Arabia will not sweeten this little hand." She also makes reference to wanting to undo what she had done when she said, "will these hands ne'er be clean?" But when she exits the scene she says, "What's done cannot be undone." This scene shows a much more vulnerable side to Lady Macbeth. Although she was sleepwalking it was her way of having a soliloquy, even though the doctor and the gentlewoman were there. This is like a soliloquy because she portrays her true feelings. Afterwards the doctor said that she didn't need a doctor but she needed a priest. This suggests its not something wrong physical but there is something wrong spiritually. Shakespeare used the gentlewoman and the doctor in this scene so there was someone to both introduce lady Macbeth and to witness what she was doing. The doctor is included to emphasise the fact that something is wrong with lady Macbeth spiritually and that there is nothing that anybody can do physically to heal her. ...read more.

Conclusion

At the start of the play lady Macbeth is seen as a dominant, heartless person who had the ambition for herself to become queen and her husband to become king. This was completely the opposite to the weak and unstable condition which she revealed at the end of the play. Her persuasive effect on Macbeth convinces him that he has the composure and nerve to go through with the murder. This is where she is determined to be stronger than him and make it seem that murder is the right way of becoming king. But this all goes wrong when Macbeth becomes a crude and calculated murderer and ends up plotting the murder of Banquo and Macduff's family. This spun him in to his own guilt filled world, which caused him to act strangely on many occasions. This is when lady Macbeth realises what she has done and is filled with guilt and horror as she had not only had killed many people, but she also ended up ruining the life of her husband. This feeling of guilt envelopes her and leads to her suicide and her husband's death. Her death is due to both the unhealthy involvement in the supernatural, which a contemporary audience would have related with, and the evil person that she clearly invented for herself rather than inherited. ...read more.

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