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How far do you think Macbeth to be a Shakespearean Tragic Hero?

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Introduction

How far do you think Macbeth to be a Shakespearean Tragic Hero? In this essay I will explore the theory made by A.C Bradley, that each of Shakespeare's man characters, are tragic heroes. This is that at the start of play, the character is usually somebody of high status; for example, Macbeth is the Thane of Glamis and he has a very high reputation for being a hero in war. Then as in A.C Bradley's theory, his character starts to flaw and eventually at the end of the play he dies. I will compare this essay to that theory and see whether the theory is correct. At the start of the play, Macbeth is portrayed as a Scottish hero. He is well respected and has a great reputation, as he is according to the Captain, very brave in battle. "For brave Macbeth- well he deserves that name". That shows that how Macbeth has built his reputation, not only as a great man, but also as a brave warrior. ...read more.

Middle

However, to manipulate Macbeth, Lady Macbeth uses horrific images to try and get him to change his mind, "Have plucked my nipple from his boneless gums, and dashed the brains out, had I so sworn as you have done this." She says this, yet nowhere has he promised her anything. Macbeth is then concerned about whether if he goes through with the murder if he will be discovered and if Lady Macbeth and him would get the blame. He is more worried about that, than the fact that it is morally wrong however, he gives in to Lady Macbeth's pressure and says: " I am settled", when he finally is convinced that the plan is full proof. Having murdered Banquo and Duncan, Macbeth starts to suffer a bit, and is starting to get a guilty conscience. He initially hid it well, but when he sees Banquo's ghost he can no longer hide it. He also feels that he is a prisoner of his own insecurities; "Then comes my fit again; I had else been perfect". ...read more.

Conclusion

"Foul whisp'rings are abroad are abroad; unnatural deeds do breed unnatural trouble; infected minds to their deaf pillows will discharge their secrets. More needs she the divine than the physician. God, God forgive us all." So Macbeth's actions affect Scotland, and the population turn against Macbeth. "Those he commands, move only command." This shows the Scottish people are no longer loyal to their king. At the end of the play, I don't feel any sympathy for Macbeth because even though he was put under immense pressure from his wife Lady Macbeth, he did not have to go through with the murders. I feel he should have sustained his reputation as a great man, because if the witches' predictions were correct, he would have eventually become king anyway. Having now gone through the play I can now conclude that Macbeth is A.C Bradley's Shakespearean tragic hero, because he starts off a man with a very high reputation, and is a man of high status being a Thane, to then becoming king, and slowly his character flaws, until he dies at the end of the play. Anthony Jones Macbeth Coursework ...read more.

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