Macbeth as a Play About the Conflict Between Good and Evil Essay
2248 Words9 Pages
Macbeth as a Play About the Conflict Between Good and Evil
Macbeth is a tragedy, which addresses the inner conflict of people's morality. Furthermore, it appears Shakespeare's intention was to portray the modern day attitudes towards religion and the supernatural of his time. Indeed, the Elizabethan audience the play was written for would have been devout Christians, and would have had strict beliefs towards good and evil. The audience was genuinely afraid of evil, and it was about this time that the Salem witch trials took place, where witches were executed. Watchers would have regarded the witches with suspicion and fear, just as Macbeth and Banquo do in the opening scenes. There is…show more content…
Throughout the play his character shows constant changes in his humanity. Numerous times in the play he shows both his immoral and virtuous sides, usually in the form of his conscience. His inner struggle is immediately evident in the first scene, when we are given two seemingly contradictory impressions of Macbeth. The first is created by the witches in the initial scene; the fact that they speak of him, mars our previously untainted opinion of him. His character is blemished simply through his brief association with the witches - "There to meet with Macbeth". Indeed, any audience of Shakespeare's time would have strongly felt that Macbeth was at least partly evil if witches knew of him. Contrastingly, the first report of Macbeth we get from an honourable kinsman, the Captain, describes him as "brave" and "Valour's minion". This description of Macbeth contrasts with our immediate view, as he is described here as honourable and courageous. We are told that Macbeth is laying down his life for his country, a very worthy and virtuous cause. However, the fact that the Captain sees Macbeth in this way, does not necessarily mean that this is his true nature. Macbeth might be deceiving his peers, to benefit himself. In this way, Macbeth could show signs of immorality, rather like Banquo voicing caution that the witches might be deceiving him -
"And oftentimes, to win us to our harm,
Macbeth - Conflict Essay
1468 Words6 Pages
"Conflict is central to the dramatic development of any play."
Prior to deciding whether or not conflict is central to the dramatic development of MACBETH, one must consider all the dramatic factors that contribute to the Shakespearean play. The gradual decline of the protagonist , the role portrayed by characters and the order in which the events occur, greatly influence the direction in which the development of the play takes place. After reading the text MACBETH, by Shakespeare and viewing the film version, directed by Roman Polanski, it is logical to see that ambition and the deceptive appearances of what really is, is central to the dramatic development of…show more content…
Take Lady Macbeth's first invocation to darkness in Act I, Scene V:
"Come, thick Night,
And pall thee in the dunnest smoke of Hell,
That my keen knife see not the wound it makes,
Nor Heaven peep through the blanket of the dark,
To cry, 'Hold, hold!'"
This vividly illustrates the imagery used in MACBETH and is interpreted to mean that night equals evil, as does Hell, which is not necessarily correct. This also implies that darkness is necessary for the carrying out of Duncan's murder. Meaning the blanket that covers him affords no protection in the darkness against the evil deed and the cry envisions the imaginary voice which MACBETH hears as he 'murders Sleep'. This encompasses the central action of the play, murder.
On the night MACBETH brutally kills the King of Scotland, Banquo fearful of his own 'cursed thoughts' observes that:
"There's husbandry in heaven;
Their candles are all out." (Act II, Scene I)
The darkness itself, which is ironically equated with Heaven, but seemingly appropriate for the acts of Hell, provides the natural cover for the unnatural murder. MACBETH in the same scene, refers to the fact that 'Nature seems dead', symbolically representing what Duncan is soon to be.
Another continuance of imagery is the 'clothes' sequence, relating to deceptive appearances to gain MACBETH's ambition by hiding the truth. This begins with MACBETH's 'borrowed robes' and has its central