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

Lady Macbeth's Breakdown in a particular Scene

Extracts from this document...


This essay will consider this scenes repetition from earlier in the play. It will also consider some of the themes and images in this scene and throughout the rest of the play. One of the themes running throughout the play is control. Early in the play she says: "Think of this, good peers, But as a thing of custom" This is from the dinner party scene, and is talking about the ghost of Banquo. She has complete control over the situation and is even able to lie, and pretend that everything is in order. This shows that she must have control over herself, and the situation to be able to do this. Lady Macbeth's loss of control is shown in the sleepwalking scene. In this scene, she says: "No more o' that, my lord. No more o' that; you mar all with starting." This is in a completely different tone; she now sounds desperate, and no longer has control. This loss of control is clear in her tone, but also in the fact that at the beginning she addresses the people at the party, which shows she has more control and confidence. In the sleepwalking scene she is addressing Macbeth, this shows a lack of confidence and control, because she does not talk to the people around her. ...read more.


This shows no sign of fear or guilt. She has no fear of being caught and believes that there is no reason to be guilty. Later, in the sleepwalking scene, however, she has much more guilt. This is shown in the fact that she is so obsessed with the blood on her hand: "Out, damned spot! Out I say!" There is actually no blood on her hand, but she still sees it. This may be a metaphorical representation of her guilt. She can't seem to get rid of the blood, like she can't get rid of the guilt. It is a direct comparison. Cleanliness is also another image of guilt. Early in the play she says: "A little water clears us of this deed" She says that it only takes a little water and we have escaped detection. This is showing that she has no guilt or she wouldn't have been so sure. She is saying that the little water will not only clear them of the crime, but of the guilt that they would have had to face. However, later in the play, in the sleepwalking scene, the cleanliness of her hands is important: "What, will these hand ne'er be clean?" Lady Macbeth keeps rubbing her hands but cannot get them clean. This is contradicting when she said a little water would rid her of the guilt. ...read more.


She is no longer giving orders. The remark is empty, she has no one to give orders to anymore, she just has herself. She has lost her power over Macbeth, he is now his own man. She has also lost her power to conceal the truth. At the beginning of the play, she is careful not to be caught: "lest occasion calls us and shows us to be watchers." She is careful that they leave before that they are caught. She has the power not only to tell Macbeth what to do here, but also has the power of deceit. In contrast, later in the play, she has no power over what she is saying, and the gentlewoman is aware of this, this is shown when she says: "She has spoke what she should not" Lady Macbeth doesn't even know what she is saying, she doesn't have the power over herself to stop her saying what she is. From this essay it is clear that the sleepwalking scene is important in lots of different ways. It shows Lady Macbeth's breakdown not only mentally, but also as a main character. It also makes you think more highly of Macbeth, as he has got through the situation without revealing anything. It also makes you realise that Lady Macbeth isn't the strong person she was first perceived to be. The repetitions from earlier scenes also make you look at the play as a whole more. Caroline May 10S ...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 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
  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work