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

What factors contribute to his change in character and which dramatic devices help the audience become aware of this descent into evil?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

In committing Duncan's murder and organising the murders of other influential characters, Macbeth's character changes from good to evil. What factors contribute to his change in character and which dramatic devices help the audience become aware of this descent into evil? The play 'Macbeth' gives the audience plenty of opportunities to consider the reasons for the main character's actions. In this essay I will consider the deterioration of Macbeth's character from good to evil. I will be looking into the factors that cause this change, and the dramatic devices that make the audience aware of Macbeth's downfall into evil. Throughout the whole of Act 1 Scene 2 it is apparent that Macbeth is a brave war hero as it says, 'For brave Macbeth - well he deserves that name'. From the report by the Captain, it is obvious that Macbeth was a major fighter in the battle and was a decisive part in the victory for King Duncan who is also full of praise, 'O valiant cousin, worthy gentleman'. Macbeth is constantly referred to as brave and loyal. This is ironical, as by the end of the play he has altered into exactly the contrary. In Act 1 Scene 3, as the witches speak, Macbeth's ambition is clearly seen as they tell him of what is to come, 'Stay you imperfect speakers, tell me more'. ...read more.

Middle

When a knocking sound is heard, Macbeth gets frightened and his wife has to take charge and pull him together Macbeth also goes on about a voice he heard when he killed Duncan, saying 'Sleep no more' and 'Glamis hath murdered sleep.' The characters that he believes are obstacles on his path to the throne trigger Macbeth's ultimate descent into evil. Slowly he kills them all because of his own obsessive fears and troubles. Another influential part in Macbeth's spiral downward is Lady Macbeth and who is the one who triggered the whole process. From the moment she receives the letter, she begins to plot Duncan's death. She makes a reference in a monologue in Act 1 Scene 5 to make herself more like a man and eliminate all her female kindness, 'unsex me here'. In Shakespeare's times, women were considered to someone who stayed at home bringing up children and were not supposed to be strong figures. They believed that men had willpower and resolve and were to do all the 'manly' things like killing. This would have been strange when the play was first performed that the roles were reversed. To get what she wants Lady Macbeth uses a number of different strategies, the most effective one being when she questions Macbeth's manliness. ...read more.

Conclusion

Therefore witches were thought to be dangerous and the servants of Satan. Today's society is more orientated to science and technology than in Elizabethan times, so the idea of witches is dismissed as we try to explain everything through science and witches are laughed at as a old fear of the past. One example of this is the successful Harry Potter series. In conclusion it is clear that there are many possible reasons why Macbeth may have behaved in the way that he did. Although the witches and Lady Macbeth played a large part in the change, it seems to me that Macbeth's ambition is the most responsible for his ruin. His only desire was to be in a position of power i.e. King, and his aspiration drove him to get there. However his ambition also caused him to murder consistently to ensure his place on the throne and although at first the murders seemed to haunt him, after a while it becomes obvious that it no longer affects him. This is shown as he threatens the messenger with death in Act 5 Scene 5, 'If thou speaketh false, upon the next tree thou shall hang alive.' His insecurities and fears were born because of his dream, and it was his paranoia and ambition that led to his downfall in character and eventually, his death. Nathan Mayer 11E2 ...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

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Macbeth essays

  1. 'Discuss the view that the witches are solely responsible for Macbeth's descent into evil'.

    not uncommon for the audience to show their feelings if the play did not met their standards. They threw rotten vegetables and shouted the actors off the stage. The girls roles were played by boys and there was no scenery and props used. The actor's script indicated the screen place.

  2. Lady Macbeth’s descent into madness and finally suicide are richly deserved, discuss

    'I would, while it was smiling in my face, Have pluck'd my nipple from his boneless gum And dash'd the brains out.' This horrific statement and use of imagery describes her killing her own child to further her husband's position.

  1. Macbeth - What factors contribute to his change in character and which dramatic devices ...

    'Things that do sound so fair' Act 1 Scene 5 Line 50 This means Banquo has the ability to see the Witches for what they are, which is contrasted by Macbeth's clouded thoughts caused by his ambition. Shakespeare makes a reference to clothing in Act 1 Scene 3, where Banquo says to Macbeth that he is 'rapt'.

  2. “Fair is Foul and Foul is Fair” - What factors contribute to the downfall ...

    "Stay you imperfect speakers, tell me more." He is clearly yearning desperately for information or else he would not mix with these evil creatures for longer than he had to. Later he speaks to himself: "Present fears Are less than horrible imaginings: My thought whose murder yet is but fantastical Shakes so my single state of man..."

  1. Which factors influence the downfall of Macbeth's character from good to evil and how ...

    "I am afraid to think of what I have done." Macbeth killing King Duncan is when his personality takes a turn for the worst. This starts his downfall from good to evil and it's because of his own dream to be King.

  2. Macbeth - If you were directing Act 2 Scene 2 what would you want ...

    a glass of water, he trembles at any noise e.g. creaking of doors, and is generally on the lookout for anyone he suspects knows what he has done he is constantly chattering to himself nervous with what he has done.

  1. In committing Duncan's murder and organising the murder of other influential characters, Macbeth's character ...

    Macbeth clearly realises that killing Duncan is an option. In Act 1 Scene 4 Macbeth's two-faced quality shows through, he is able to be polite and friendly to the king. Macbeth's ambition is one of the driving forces which has lingered in the background of the play and has driven Macbeth due to his own fault in character to

  2. Macbetth - What factors contribute to his change in character and which dramatic devices ...

    These predictions start on line 46, "All hail Macbeth, hail to thee, Thane of Glamis" "All hail Macbeth, hail to thee, Thane of Cawdor" "All hail Macbeth, that shalt be King hereafter". By saying this as Macbeth enters they are acting like people would after their predictions came true.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work