Preview

Change And Reestablishment Of Gender Roles In Macbeth

Best Essays
Open Document
Open Document
3335 Words
Grammar
Grammar
Plagiarism
Plagiarism
Writing
Writing
Score
Score
Change And Reestablishment Of Gender Roles In Macbeth
Change and Reestablishment of Gender Roles in Macbeth
Shakespeare explores in Macbeth a gender roles’ issue. The protagonists, Macbeth and Lady Macbeth, are described in contraposition with the natural order because their behaviour is not according to the Elizabethan thinking and consequently they exchange attributes of each other. The subjects treated in Macbeth are power, ambition and tyranny among others. These topics become central when analysing Macbeth’s characteristics and deeds. However, this play equally focuses on his wife and her contributions for the developing of actions. What is more, taking into account the complexity of the play, it is possible to make a deeper analysis and consider the richness of the main characters, Macbeth and Lady Macbeth, whose features and attitudes deserve to be critically analysed. Thus, it is possible to find a man carrying feminine traits and a woman taking a more masculine role. Then, these gender roles revert in the second half of the play, showing the male and female figures as they are naturally assumed.
Some critics refer to the main characters’ gender roles and analyse the way in which both Macbeth and Lady Macbeth interact in the play. Dolora G. Cunningham (1966:70) claims that this tragedy presents us the main characters’ gender as if they complement each other. She mentions that the defeat of human feeling is an important element in the tragic decisions taken by Macbeth to accomplish his next evil actions. Before the killing, kingship cannot be obtained because he is not able to create his non-human feeling. It is Lady Macbeth who supplies the power to complete the act which makes ruin inevitable. Furthermore, William Hazlitt (1966:103) compares the main characters’ actions in the first part of the play. While Macbeth gives his speeches and soliloquies showing his energy, agitation and desperation, Lady Macbeth’s masculine firmness seizes the opportunity to reach greatness because she is formed by the hardness

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • Good Essays

    Feminity and Lady Macbeth

    • 533 Words
    • 3 Pages

    Lady Macbeth, to some extent, can be considered an oxymoron, for within Shakespeare’s tragedy Macbeth, her femininity is portrayed as the antithesis of what being an ideal woman and wife is about. Instead of being a graceful, elegant female faithful to the wishes and commands of her husband, Lady Macbeth’s character contradicts that kind of feminine role. She represents a different side of the characteristics of femininity. As one the most complex characters in the play, she is portrayed as a dark, manipulative and cunning woman, able to cast a wicked and harrowing spell over Macbeth.…

    • 533 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Better Essays

    The play Macbeth, written by William Shakespeare, explores an abundant of encounters to the rigid gender representation demonstrated in the play. The play revolves around the questioning of femininity and masculinity, allowing us to explore how certain characters equivocate the definition of gender to please their favour and how each gender identities are created for persuasion of the natural order that corresponds to the traditional order - Lady Macbeth and Macbeth exploit and redefine gender ideology, an unbalance is created when Lady Macbeth is displayed as the dominant character of the relationship, during the Jacobean era it is believed that it is proper to remain in your respected gender role and not to over rule your husband otherwise there would be consequences.…

    • 1610 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Better Essays
  • Good Essays

    Psychoanalysis and feminism In ‘’ Macbeth’’ William Shakespeare is one of the best writers of the Renaissance. He is unforgettable person and admired by young and older people. His works are used in mass media and popular culture. His plays are always alive in art, television, theatre. In the essay there would be discussed the most popular female character found in his play " Macbeth"- Lady Macbeth. She is an extraordinary example of the person who was analysed by psychoanalysis. One of the person who wrote about her case is Karin Thomson in the essay “ Psychoanalytical Criticism”. Also I would like to pay attention to the notion of feminism in Lady Macbeth. The case is discussed in the essay wrote by and dr. Caroline Cakebread in “ Macbeth and Feminism “ .…

    • 546 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Powerful Essays

    During the play, Shakespeare presents the theme of conflict in various ways. From the conflict between the characters and their innermost desires to the disagreements between characters and their different opinions and furthermore the dispute between good and evil. In this essay, however, I will be investigating and analysing the conflict between Macbeth and Lady Macbeth throughout the course of the play. In particular, I will be exploring how numerous circumstances affect and influence the different aspects of their relationship.…

    • 2127 Words
    • 9 Pages
    Powerful Essays
  • Good Essays

    Macbeth and Lady Macbeth show the first instances of this peculiar gender role reversal, which occurs exceptionally early in the play when Macbeth is conflicted with the choice of either killing Duncan as according to the plan or spare his life as he begins to see the true wickedness of this act. Here Macbeth exhibits weakness, an inability to do something treacherous and soul…

    • 898 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Better Essays

    “Of all Shakespeare's female characters Lady Macbeth stands out far beyond the rest — remarkable for her ambition, strength of will, cruelty, and dissimulation” (Traits of Lady). Lady Macbeth is usually viewed as an interesting character because of her notable traits. Her cruelty, cunning, and manipulation certainly contribute to one’s fascination with her. However, equally intriguing are Lady Macbeth’s notorious views she possesses. The unyielding views Lady Macbeth holds on manhood, womanhood, and guilt greatly affect her life.…

    • 937 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Better Essays
  • Good Essays

    Gender Roles In Macbeth

    • 1778 Words
    • 8 Pages

    These include different motifs, types of symbolism, classes, and gender roles. While they all play their own significant parts in the play, probably the most intriguing element is the utilization and distortion of gender roles and their impact on the final outcome of Macbeth. The influence of gender roles in Shakespeare’s life and writing could be attributed to the political conflict occurring in England during that time. A few different female monarchs of this time, most importantly Queen Elizabeth I, either had claims to or did ascend to the English throne. Females at the time were doubted as capable of being sole rulers, as their natures would cause them to be weak and vulnerable to failure. Despite this long-standing view Queen Elizabeth successfully reigned due to the idea of “the king’s two bodies” that disregards gender in the case of being a monarch. (Greenblatt 359-361, 392-393) Like many aspects of court life for play writers, the queen probably influenced the substance of Shakespeare’s writing to some degree. This play in particular contains some intriguing looks at gender roles and even more fascinating female…

    • 1778 Words
    • 8 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    A well-known adventurist once said,"A man's pride can be his downfall." This exemplifies the eventual destruction of Macbeth's emotional and mental stability along with his reign as king due to his excess of pride. Throughout Shakespeare's Macbeth, masculinity and femininity are associated more with power and weakness, rather than gender. Masculinity is often paired with cruelty and murder while femininity usually renders weakness and occasionally logic. The idea that power rests in men, while women are inferior is common throughout Macbeth. Throughout the play, Macbeth shifts between femininity and masculinity, but in the end, it is a combination of power-craving, cruel masculinity and overbearing, weak femininity that destroys Macbeth.…

    • 790 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Better Essays

    Theme Of Power In Macbeth

    • 997 Words
    • 4 Pages

    Macbeth, a dark and gruesome tragic play written by William Shakespeare primarily discusses the concept of greed for more authority. Emasculation and the Great Chain of Being are some core components of this play that are discussed through gothic poetry. Macbeth and Lady Macbeth are the main characters in the play. Through Macbeth’s catalyst, his wife, he found the strength to kill King Duncan. Lady Macbeth was his agent in many of the scenes in the play. Their compatible pairing lead to many “successes”, but also to their own deaths. Shakespeare brilliantly uses garment metaphors throughout the play as well as the innocent flower and crafty serpent motif to express Macbeth’s mindset and tragedy.…

    • 997 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Better Essays
  • Satisfactory Essays

    Macbeth Outline

    • 296 Words
    • 2 Pages

    Outline 1. Introduction A. Macbeth and Lady Macbeth with their differences in gender and the fact that they switch roles in the play.…

    • 296 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Satisfactory Essays
  • Good Essays

    Shakespeare’s play Macbeth, is one of the most well known tragedies written by William Shakespeare. Truth be told, Shakespeare's Macbeth embodies how ladies were characterized and controlled by the patriarchal society that they lived in, and mirrors issues even in those days that ladies in today's current society still need to fight with. The play Macbeth, is male-character dominate, it concentrates on one man battling against other men in his court so as to secure his own particular position as ruler. However the motivation of the story, why everything starts, lies in on account of a lady named Lady Macbeth.…

    • 549 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    The Development of Macbeth and Lady Macbeth’s Relationship The Shakespearean play Macbeth is a deceitful, deceptive and fate-led tragedy in which Macbeth, prophecies of supernatural powers and the assistance of Lady Macbeth create chaos in Scotland. The development of the relationship between Macbeth and his wife is one of the most evident changes which take place throughout the play. Throughout the play, the valiant Macbeth goes from being kind, conscious and dependent on his wife to the character, his spouse originally was; a cruel, conscious-less, dominant partner.…

    • 976 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Satisfactory Essays

    This essay will focus on Macbeth’s treatment of Lady Macbeth changes throughout the play and how it contrasts to the treatment of 17th Century Women and the societal norms of the time.…

    • 715 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Satisfactory Essays
  • Good Essays

    Masculinity In Macbeth

    • 613 Words
    • 3 Pages

    In Shakespeare's, Macbeth, (1606), and as in many of his tragic plays, gender roles have an important impact upon the courses of events. Besides the obvious difference of gender, these roles convey a unique and important processes throughout a short, tragic, and bloody play. Weather it's the ambition of a man, and the greed of a woman, their biggest fear of them all, would be fate and their chosen destiny.…

    • 613 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Better Essays

    Macbeth and Gender Roles

    • 2058 Words
    • 9 Pages

    Ladan Abdullahi The Tragedy of Macbeth and Gender roles Every writer has an inspiration, whether they get inspired from their personal lives or the lives of others, nonetheless they get inspired. Inspiration is what causes authors to write, it is the fundamental reasoning behind writing. William Shakespeare is no exception to this. Although, William Shakespeare is considered to be one of the greatest playwrights of all time, nevertheless he was still influenced by various factors that led him to write his exhilarating plays for example, The Tragedy of Macbeth. The Tragedy of Macbeth is a stellar piece of literature that is still considered to be one of the greatest tragedies ever written. Macbeth is a play that is a conflict of good and evil which centers on timeless themes such as ambition, greed, and finally fate. Driven to becoming King, Macbeth will kill all and any that get in his way. He puts his faith in the words and prophecies of three witches, after the witches’ first prophecy comes through. Macbeth's wife, Lady Macbeth, is orchestrating Macbeth's actions, egging him on when he fears he has gone too far, and scheming of greatness. Macbeth commits murder after murder, only to experience a cruel and gruesome death similar to the ones he inflicted on his victims. The roles of men and women in the patriarchal society during the Elizabethan era were among the influences that led William Shakespeare to write The Tragedy of Macbeth. William Shakespeare's personal experiences and the time period in which he lived influenced him to write The Tragedy of Macbeth in which he communicated the universal truth that men and women were not considered to be equal during the Elizabethan era.…

    • 2058 Words
    • 9 Pages
    Better Essays

Related Topics