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The stories of Macbeth and Frankenstein are two texts depicting the life and tragic flaws of the two main characters which bring them to an eventual downfall.

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Introduction

The stories of Macbeth and Frankenstein are two texts depicting the life and tragic flaws of the two main characters which bring them to an eventual downfall. The two pieces of writing have both similar and different characteristics between them. It can be argued that the texts present much of the same story line, only written in very different time periods. Shakespeare's famous play, Macbeth, was written in 1606 in honour of King James' coronation, while Mary Shelley's Frankenstein was written as a Gothic novel in 1818. Despite the different time periods that they were written in, both of the stories contain a dark and supernatural atmosphere which evokes feelings of terror in readers. Macbeth and Frankenstein share similar quests and tragic flaws, but the treatment of their loved ones is very different. One of the main themes in Macbeth is ambition and from the start we can see just how tempted Macbeth is at the thought of becoming king. He recognises his ''black and deep desires'' but writes to tell his wife at length and is increasingly torn by a 'suggestion' that killing King Duncan will make the witches' predictions come true. Macbeth recognises where ambition can lead and the contrast between what he thinks he should do, and his inner thoughts. ...read more.

Middle

Yet, he might still overcome the promptings of his evil ambition by an effort. After the battle, Macbeth is greeted with a effusive thanks by King Duncan. Duncan then announces that he will make Malcolm heir to the throne. In Act 1, scene 6, Macbeth in his aside states that this announcement is a bar to his ambition and calls upon darkness to cover what he wishes to be done: ''That is a step on which I must fall down, or else o'erleap, for in my way it lies. Stars, hide your fires; let not light see my black and deep desires: The eye wink at the hand; yet let that be which the eye fears, when it is done, to see'' (1:6:49-54). As Duncan makes the announcement, Macbeth starts wondering if murder is the only way in which he can achieve the kingship. His ambition overcomes his finer nature. He calls upon the stars to hide their light, indicating that his "black" desires comes out, as he thinks it is too evil to be seen. Macbeth's image of the eye winking upon the work of the hand is expressive both of his intense aversion to the deed and of his intense desire to get what the deed will accomplish. At the same time his "let that be" marks the point at which his fascinated contemplation of the thought of murdering Duncan becomes a resolution, although he will waver from it. ...read more.

Conclusion

However throughout the entire novel, Frankenstein is completely consumed by his creation of the Monster. First of all, he isolates himself from his loved ones to create the Monster, and abandons them more and more as he becomes depressed and later embarks on another project to appease the Monster he has created. Finally, he realizes that as a result of abandoning his own creation and abandoning his family and friends, he has lost them all. In Macbeth's case, his loved one, Lady Macbeth, was deeply involved in his wrong actions and even inspired some of them. She was the master mind behind the plot to murder King Duncan and convinced Macbeth to do the deed. After all the shedding of innocent blood, the long and sleepless nights, and the never ending struggle with guilt, Lady Macbeth took her own life, leaving Macbeth alone to face his much deserved death. Instead of looking out for his wife, Macbeth instead abandons her to hopelessness and ultimate despair as he murderously presses on in his quest for power. We can see that the characters differ in regards to how they treat their loved ones. Macbeth includes his wife in his evil deeds, resulting in her death. While Frankenstein abandons the Monster and excludes his family and friends, resulting in their deaths too. Therefore, it could be said that while Macbeth and Frankenstein may share similar quests and tragic flaws, the treatment of their loved ones is very different. ...read more.

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