Macbeth and Animal Farm Analysis

Topics: Macbeth, William Shakespeare, Animal Farm Pages: 2 (880 words) Published: February 8, 2015
Explore the ways ambition is presented and developed in the texts Macbeth and Animal Farm. Macbeth and Animal farm have many common elements that can be paralleled between the two texts. One of the main ideas is the way the two main characters, Macbeth and Napoleon have an intense ambition and languish to have control over others which they take by force and their desperate attempts to contain it. William Shakespeare portrays Macbeth as a cold-blooded, power-hungry and ambitious tyrant, blinded by his burning desire to be authoritative, who will go to extreme measures to achieve his goals. On the contrary, George Orwell shows Napoleon as a manipulative character who hides his true intentions (much like Macbeth) from all those around him, even those who are his supposed allies. Both texts have historical backgrounds. Orwell writes about the Russian Revolution, in form of an allegory, (which has led to the fable being described as political literature with universal resonance), however Macbeth was a play of extreme violence written in the Elizabethan period for the reigning monarchs (King James I) in 1606. Shakespeare shows the darker side of humanity through Macbeths desire to be the best and how he becomes ruthless and emotionless from securing it. Macbeths ambition first comes to light to the reader when Banquo describes Macbeth as “rapt withal” after hearing the witches prophecies which strongly indicated that he would become King. The word “rapt” can be interpreted to be a double entendre suggesting that Macbeth is both wrapped up in his thoughts and is unable to find a way out as well as being literally entranced and “rapt” by the news the witches have told him. Although Banquo strongly dismisses the idea that the prophecies could even contain the faintest bit of truth however Macbeth quickly becomes intrigued by what the witches have to offer him pleading “Stay you imperfect speakers. / Tell me more.” It is at this point that the reader realises that...
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