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Macbeth: Analysis of Act II, Scenes 1-2

Macbeth: Analysis of Act II, Scenes 1-2

 Analysis of Scenes 1-2, Act II
Readers of Macbeth by Shakespeare cannot help but despise and relate to Macbeth and his
wife at the same tim

Macbeth: Analysis of Act II, Scenes 1-2

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bena sophia

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11/12/13

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A thorough analysis of Act II, Scenes 1-2 of Shakespeare's tragedy Macbeth

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Analysis of Scenes 1-2, Act II Readers of Macbeth by Shakespeare cannot help but despise and relate to Macbeth and his wife at the same time. Following the murder of King Duncan, both have very contrasting feelings towards the crime and the reader is unable to choose who is right. Therefore, I am going to analyse the end of scene 1 as well as scene 2 of Act II in order to point out the protagonists' fears and views. Just before committing murder, Macbeth is in a very agitated emotional state, as is described by the metaphor "a dagger of the mind” (p. 24, I. 38). In addition to that, his brain deceives him with "a false creation" (p. 24, I. 38). However, Macbeth is still aware that his brain is creating an illusion. This is due to it being "heat-oppressed" (p. 24, I. 39), which shows how disturbed Macbeth is during that moment. The act of the murder is already present in his mind and haunts him even before it is even completed, which one can clearly see when he "sees" the victim before his eyes (p. 25, l. 40). Speaking to himself breaks the deadly silence (p. 25, I. 59) and literally cools down his nervous brain (p. 25, l....

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61). The obsession with the coming deed is shown when Macbeth associates everything that happens with the murder: He interprets a ringing bell as a funeral bell announcing the upcoming death of King Duncan (p. 25, I. 63). Macbeth obviously feels very guilty right after the murder: He describes his bloody hands as a "sorry sight” (p. 27, I. 23) and acknowledges that he murdered an “innocent” and unprotected victim in their "sleep” (p. 27, I. 39), which is why he wants to undo what he has done (p. 29, 1. 77). Either the witches have cursed him or he is having hallucinations of a voice informing him that he “shall sleep no more” (p. 28, I. 46), which means his thoughts will keep racing and never come to a rest. His need of emotional comfort is overwhelming, but the guilt is dominating him and therefore makes emotional support impossible (p. 27, l. 34-36). Whilst feeling deep remorse, he wants avoid everything that reminds him the act, which is illustrated when Macbeth says “I am afraid to think what I have done" (p. 28, 1. 54). Even looking at his own hands shocks him (p. 28, 1. 62). At the same time, Macbeth is aware that the past cannot be changed in any way and that he will stain all of his surroundings (p. 28, 1. 64-66). It becomes clear that the devastated Macbeth is living in the moment and overwhelmed by all that has happened. Contrary to that, Lady Macbeth has been drinking and is not as agitated as Macbeth, although she uses rhetorical metaphors and symbols of death at the beginning of scene 2 (“I heard the owl scream and the crickets cry", p. 26, I. 15). This shows that she is well aware of the crime but still does not agree with Macbeth on the "sorry sight” (p. 27, I. 24). She even tells her husband not to worry about it and leave it in the past (p. 27). Lady Macbeth indirectly tells her husband that he is “mad” (p. 27, 1. 37) and “brain-sick[...]” (p. 28, I. 49). Because of her lack of empathy, she thinks that all the guilt and remorse can be "washed off" (p. 28, 1. 50) by "a little water” (p. 29, I. 70). Belittling him by comparing Macbeth with a child (p. 28, I. 57), she even reproaches him for not leaving the daggers at the murder scene (p. 28, I. 51). On top of that, Lady Macbeth ironically downplays the seriousness of the situation by using the word "gild" for rubbing blood on the chamberlains' faces (p. 28, l. 59). While Macbeth uses the repetition of "blood" (p. 25, I. 46 and I. 48), his wife describes his heart as "white" (p. 29, l. 68) because of the guilt he is showing. She therefore declares herself as guilty but has no problem with it. Despite Lady Macbeth warning her husband of letting his emotions take over, he is “lost so poorly in [his] thoughts" (p. 29, II. 74). She does not show any fear of the crime and the dead, pays no respect and limits the happening to "pictures" (p. 28, 1. 57), which means she has distanced herself from reality. In conclusion, Lady Macbeth is not as agitated as her husband and thinks clearly and ahead. Macbeth ignores her talk about madness and forgetting his feelings because he is too caught up in the moment.

Englisch /

Macbeth: Analysis of Act II, Scenes 1-2

Macbeth: Analysis of Act II, Scenes 1-2

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bena sophia

18 Followers
 

11/12/13

Ausarbeitung

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 Analysis of Scenes 1-2, Act II
Readers of Macbeth by Shakespeare cannot help but despise and relate to Macbeth and his
wife at the same tim

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A thorough analysis of Act II, Scenes 1-2 of Shakespeare's tragedy Macbeth

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Analysis of Scenes 1-2, Act II Readers of Macbeth by Shakespeare cannot help but despise and relate to Macbeth and his wife at the same time. Following the murder of King Duncan, both have very contrasting feelings towards the crime and the reader is unable to choose who is right. Therefore, I am going to analyse the end of scene 1 as well as scene 2 of Act II in order to point out the protagonists' fears and views. Just before committing murder, Macbeth is in a very agitated emotional state, as is described by the metaphor "a dagger of the mind” (p. 24, I. 38). In addition to that, his brain deceives him with "a false creation" (p. 24, I. 38). However, Macbeth is still aware that his brain is creating an illusion. This is due to it being "heat-oppressed" (p. 24, I. 39), which shows how disturbed Macbeth is during that moment. The act of the murder is already present in his mind and haunts him even before it is even completed, which one can clearly see when he "sees" the victim before his eyes (p. 25, l. 40). Speaking to himself breaks the deadly silence (p. 25, I. 59) and literally cools down his nervous brain (p. 25, l....

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61). The obsession with the coming deed is shown when Macbeth associates everything that happens with the murder: He interprets a ringing bell as a funeral bell announcing the upcoming death of King Duncan (p. 25, I. 63). Macbeth obviously feels very guilty right after the murder: He describes his bloody hands as a "sorry sight” (p. 27, I. 23) and acknowledges that he murdered an “innocent” and unprotected victim in their "sleep” (p. 27, I. 39), which is why he wants to undo what he has done (p. 29, 1. 77). Either the witches have cursed him or he is having hallucinations of a voice informing him that he “shall sleep no more” (p. 28, I. 46), which means his thoughts will keep racing and never come to a rest. His need of emotional comfort is overwhelming, but the guilt is dominating him and therefore makes emotional support impossible (p. 27, l. 34-36). Whilst feeling deep remorse, he wants avoid everything that reminds him the act, which is illustrated when Macbeth says “I am afraid to think what I have done" (p. 28, 1. 54). Even looking at his own hands shocks him (p. 28, 1. 62). At the same time, Macbeth is aware that the past cannot be changed in any way and that he will stain all of his surroundings (p. 28, 1. 64-66). It becomes clear that the devastated Macbeth is living in the moment and overwhelmed by all that has happened. Contrary to that, Lady Macbeth has been drinking and is not as agitated as Macbeth, although she uses rhetorical metaphors and symbols of death at the beginning of scene 2 (“I heard the owl scream and the crickets cry", p. 26, I. 15). This shows that she is well aware of the crime but still does not agree with Macbeth on the "sorry sight” (p. 27, I. 24). She even tells her husband not to worry about it and leave it in the past (p. 27). Lady Macbeth indirectly tells her husband that he is “mad” (p. 27, 1. 37) and “brain-sick[...]” (p. 28, I. 49). Because of her lack of empathy, she thinks that all the guilt and remorse can be "washed off" (p. 28, 1. 50) by "a little water” (p. 29, I. 70). Belittling him by comparing Macbeth with a child (p. 28, I. 57), she even reproaches him for not leaving the daggers at the murder scene (p. 28, I. 51). On top of that, Lady Macbeth ironically downplays the seriousness of the situation by using the word "gild" for rubbing blood on the chamberlains' faces (p. 28, l. 59). While Macbeth uses the repetition of "blood" (p. 25, I. 46 and I. 48), his wife describes his heart as "white" (p. 29, l. 68) because of the guilt he is showing. She therefore declares herself as guilty but has no problem with it. Despite Lady Macbeth warning her husband of letting his emotions take over, he is “lost so poorly in [his] thoughts" (p. 29, II. 74). She does not show any fear of the crime and the dead, pays no respect and limits the happening to "pictures" (p. 28, 1. 57), which means she has distanced herself from reality. In conclusion, Lady Macbeth is not as agitated as her husband and thinks clearly and ahead. Macbeth ignores her talk about madness and forgetting his feelings because he is too caught up in the moment.