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Macbeth Act Ii Questions

By willmawill123 Nov 12, 2012 1209 Words
Macbeth Act II Questions
Scene i
1.When Banquo remarks that the night is especially dark, the nature reflects the characters affairs and emotions. The scene between Banquo and Macbeth has a dark atmosphere that gives off a threatening feeling. While Banquo is talking to Macbeth, Macbeth has already made up his mind about killing king Duncan and is very close to his chamber; this creates the restless and gloomy atmosphere which reflects what is going through Macbeth’s mind. Also, when Banquo motions the three witches and their prophecy, it seems that he is testing Macbeth to see his reaction or response; it could be interpreted that Banquo was in fact, suspicious of Macbeth and might have even known of his evil plans and is warning him, but also saying that his loyalty lies with him regardless. Their conversation creates a dark and suspicious atmosphere and foreshadows Macbeth’s evil plans.

2.Banquo seems to be suspicious of Macbeth because at first he told Fleance that something is bothering him and occupying his thoughts which prevents him from sleeping, he draws his sword when Macbeth and his servant enter which implies that he is highly alarmed and does not feel safe in Macbeth’s castle for some reason; Banquo also mentions the wierd sisters and brings up the subject of their prophecy coming true which could be because he was trying to test Macbeth and see how he would react and lastly, Banquo said that his loyalty lies with Macbeth regardless of the situation which could mean that he knows what Macbeth is going to do and is assuring him of his loyalty and passive assistance.

3.When Macbeth says “Present fears are less than horrible imaginings” it is clear to the readers that Macbeth is fully aware of where his evil deeds will lead him to; he knows that by killing Duncan, there would be no happy ending for him as well. Macbeth is being driven to insanity and is sure that this crime would lead him to eternal damnation; he reflects on his decisions and the crime he is about to commit; his guilt is slowly eating him even though he has not killed Duncan yet which only further proves that the fears and anxiety he is feeling now would be nothing compared to the guilt and the horrible imaginings once he has done the deed. Scene ii

1.Lady Macbeth is implied to be not as strong as she pretends to be when she mentioned that she could not kill Duncan herself and had to push the job to her husband because Duncan looked too much like her father as he slept; this seems to be an excuse and the real reason might have been that she was afraid of the consequences of getting caught and did not want to get her hands dirty. Also, when Lady Macbeth had just came back from getting the guards drunk, she was at a state of panic and she was easily alarmed by any sound (owl shriek, wind, knock etc.) which suggests that she was nervous and afraid even though she criticized her husband for being weak and witless.

2.Shakespeare might have made Duncan die off the stage firstly because the scene might have upset a lot of his audience and left a bad impression, second is due to the fear of being punished or criticized for visually demonstrating the highest treason against the country and God which is regicide and lastly, it might have been because he wanted to leave the audience room for imagining the scene themselves.

3.Lady Macbeth changes her mind and decides not to kill the king herself because Duncan’s face reminds her of her father as he slept; this implies that Lady Macbeth is not as brave and daring as she pretends to be and that she is very cunning because she does not want to get involved directly with the murder of the king and seduces her husband into killing him for their benefit without getting her hands dirty.

4.At the end of this scene Macbeth tells Lady Macbeth “To know my deed, ‘twere best not know my self.” This shows that Macbeth is a very self conscious person who knows what he is doing is very wrong and inhumane, he even tells his wife that he does not wish to “know” or in other words, confront himself knowing about his awful deed. This could mean that Macbeth is disgusted with himself and cannot bring to reflect on what he has done because he will realize that he made a mistake however, his ambitions and his greed for power overrules his self-conscious and compels him to do deeds that he considers as immoral and evil himself. Scene iii

1.The night which Macbeth had experienced was very dark and gloomy with a heavy atmosphere that reflected his inner thoughts and plans to kill king Duncan while the night Lennox described was very restless and filled with sounds of thunder, storm and screams of people about a murder which could imply that Macbeth’s killing Duncan had somehow messed up the balance of nature and caused it to become restless and terrifying to reflect the horrible crime that Macbeth had committed.

2.Before: Determined, courageous, ambitious, powerful, strong self-conscious, hesitant After: Scarred, panicked, anxious, restless, guilt driven, imaginative, alarmed, intuitive, paranoid.

3.Lady Macbeth’s actions show how cunning and two-faced she is someone who is stereotypically expected to be kind, gentle and innocent. Lady Macbeth does a great job in acting shocked and upset once they break her the news about Duncan’s murder while she is fully aware of who did it. Lady Macbeth’s self-conscious has been shut down therefore, she is able to put on a flawless show for people and convince them of her innocence and lack of knowledge. When Lady Macbeth faints, it could be interpreted that she actually faints due to finding out that Macbeth had killed the guards and turned into a heartless killing machine; it could also be interpreted that she pretends to faint in order to draw everyone’s attention from Macbeth who was being suspected and questioned to herself.

4.Malcolm says “This murderous shaft hath not yet lightened, and out safest way is to avoid the aim.” Which means that since people are not sure who has done the deed, the best thing to do is to run away and “avoid” the murderer’s aim so that they could survive and preserve the linage of their father instead of staying and putting on appearances for the sake of the lords which they no longer trust. Scene iv

Macduff is a Scottish nobleman who was apparently loyal to king Duncan and seems to be highly suspicious of Macbeth and does not believe that Malcolm and Donaldbain, the king’s two sons have done the deed even though they are the number one suspects. It seems that Macduff is an intelligent person who does not merely obey anyone who stands higher than him. Macduff is probably going to Fife and not attending Macbeth’s ceremony so that he can further investigate Duncan’s murder and keep an eye out on Macbeth without being too close to him.

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