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Macbeth Literary Commentary. Act 2 scene 1, lines 31-64,

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_______L** English 10 Period 5 Macbeth Commentary Word Count: 653 Role of Driving Ambition Soliloquies in the play, Macbeth, by William Shakespeare, have been greatly applauded for their aesthetic and creative meanings. In this particular part of the scene, Act 2 scene 1, lines 31-64, Lady Macbeth has convinced her husband to murder duncan. However on the way to the king?s chamber, Macbeth spots a dagger before him. In this passage, Shakespeare amplifies the usage of literary devices in Macbeth?s soliloquy, to display the after effect when ambitious thoughts are causing one to carry out a malevolent deed. Shakespeare highlights the changes in one's mind as ambitious thoughts consume their morals, ideals and judgement ability through the motif of hallucination. Upon seeing a floating dagger whilst walking towards Duncan?s chamber, Macbeth shouts, ?Is this a dagger which I see before me,/the handle toward my hand? ...read more.


Shakespeare warns that even those that are most loyal can turn false-hearted, if ambition consumes the decision makings that are ethical. Metaphor plays a colossal role in portraying how ambition can lead one?s mind to go vile which would affect their lives permanently. After seeing the dagger, Macbeth says, ?A dagger of the mind, a false creation,/proceeding from the heat-oppressed brain?? (2.1.38-39). The metaphor of ?dagger of the mind? in this case, like mentioned before, is guilt and doubt. Macbeth claims that that the dagger is a false imagination. Also, the definition of heat-oppressed, in Shakespeare language, means feverish. The literal meaning of fever is a symptom of a disease, and this disease serves as a metaphor, where fever symbolizes a state of intense emotion. The metaphor for disease can be viewed as his ambitions, because his ambitious activities give him heightened sentiments. ...read more.


Shakespeare shows the importance of being just at all times, and always stick to what one?s code of ethics is leading themselves to. William Shakespeare displays strong themes to the audience about human ambition, where one can lead themselves into their own demise. Readers can realize the effect of unchecked ambition, even if it means hurting somebody that one admires and loves. Shakespeare reminds readers that ambition is always a sizeable aspect of any healthy human?s life, whether one may be sovereign or vagabond. However, Shakespeare warns that our ambitions should have limits and be moderated from time to time, as we can become so consumed with our goals that we lose track of those around us, and what greater failure exceeds ruining the dreams of another human being. It seems that the author advises us that we should never be self-consumed with our own ambition, but instead, our ambitions should be shared by all people, so that when we succeed and fail, we are united as one in humanity. ...read more.

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