Macbeth is the last of the four tragedies written by Shakespeare. Shakespeare depicts how Macbeth, who was once a powerful hero, sinks into a tyrant bringing calamity to the country and people. That reflected his individual ambition and lust for power, which destroyed human nature and showed us the essence of anti-humanity caused by the extreme individualism. There exists inner certainty in Macbeth’s tragedy, which is the ambitious desire, the sense of guilty for vicious circle and unfounded persistence and confidence. Macbeth’s tragedy was not only the tragedy of disposition, but also that of the society. This paper structurally consists of six parts: a brief introduction to the play; a tragic character; Macbeth’s individuality; the drive of the internal factor and conclusion. The purpose of this paper is to indicate Macbeth’s fate is determined by his character which has been developed under the interaction between external and internal factors. 1. A brief introduction to the play
Macbeth is in some respect a relatively simple play; its structure follows a standard conventional form: the rise and fall of a great man. As one of King Duncan’s chief generals and closest military advisers, Macbeth is led to perform wicked deeds by the prophecies of three witches and the machinations of his wife. Finally, he loses everything. Macbeth is a totally different drama. There is nothing at all theatrical about the presentation of his character. He is not confide in us or seeks to establish any cozy relationship with the audience. There is nothing in Macbeth’s character or conduct which invites us to see any black humor in the play (other than the brief scene with the porter). Instead there is an astonishingly penetrating development of Macbeth’s character. The focus here is directly upon what he is thinking and feeling, why he acts the way he does, and what consequences his own evil brings about upon himself. And the profundity of Shakespeare’s examination of these questions makes this play immeasurably more complex. Macbeth is one of Shakespeare’s most compelling characters, and the play is, of all Shakespeare’s great tragedies, the one which responds most immediately to character analysis. 2. A tragic character
Macbeth’s story is obviously a tragedy in the formal sense. At the start of the play he is a very successful and highly esteemed member of a social group, loaded with honors and enjoying every prospect of further commendation (Johnston, 2001). He has a loving wife and a secure home in his castle at Inverness. At the end of the play Macbeth is totally alone. He has lost everything. He is a man without a place in the social community. He has become totally isolated. 2.1
The witches have directed Macbeth’s behavior, and controlled his destiny. It leads to his deconstruction. Therefore three witches are considering as the god of destiny. The wicked suggestions of the witches have sunk too deep into the mind of Macbeth to direct him to warn of the good Banquo. From that time he bent on compassing the throne of Scotland. 2.2 Tragic environment
Britain’s Hazlet mentioned in his book The Shakespeare’s Play Characters that Macbeth becomes a tyrant is just the environmental effect. He is pushed up the crime path by the suitable opportunity, his wife’s and the witches’ instigates. His tragedy lays in not only his crime but also the pities in his heart. (Xiao, 2009) “Glamis thou art, and Cawdor; and shalt be. What thou art promised: yet do I fear thy nature; it is too full o’ the milk of human kindness. To catch the nearest way: thou wouldst be great; Art not without ambition, but without. The illness should attend it: what thou wouldst highly, that wouldst thou holily; wouldst not play false, And yet wouldst wrongly win: thou’ldst have, great Glamis, That which cries ‘Thus thou must do, if thou have it; and that which rather thou dost fear to do Than wishest should be undone.’ Hie thee hither, That I...
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