The Scottish Play

Macbeth Summative: Emily Buasri B2

Who is to blame?

I believe the only person to blame here is Macbeth. He created his own fate. He drove himself crazy. Him ambition to become king lead to his unfateful demise. Macbeth was a content little Thane before the witches came along and all they did was tell him the prophecy; Macbeth made it happen. He could have lived as a happy Thane of Glamis and Cawdor but he wanted more. First he wanted to make his wife happy by killing Duncan. Lady Macbeth pushed him, calling him a coward, but Macbeth was a coward. A coward for not standing in what he believed in, that killing Duncan was not the answer. He was a coward for not standing up to his wife. Macbeth let her get under his skin. He had to prove he was a "man". Macbeth could have avoided murder if he hadn't tried to "prove himself a man": "I dare do all that may become a man. Who dares do more is none" (Macbeth 1.7, 52-53). Secondly after Macbeth killed Duncan, he decided to have Banquo and Fleance murdered. Macbeth did this act without any influence from anyone. Even his wife tried to talk him out of it. "We have scorched the snake, not killed it" (Macbeth 3.2, 15). Macbeth had planned to kill Banquo and Fleance to ensure his throne and his unborn son's. "Our fears in Banquo stick deep... Reigns that would be much feared... Given to the common enemy of a man" (Macbeth 3.1, 53-73). Macbeth had delusions after Banquo was killed, wasn't that a sign he was going crazy. After, he had Lady Macduff and her son killed just to get back at Macduff for preparing for war. As if Macduff didn't have anything to go to war over. Macbeth was officially consumed by greed at which time his wife commited suicide and he was too busy with war to care. Only Macbeth was to blame for his downfall as he demanded to know more and more from the witches. Macbeth knew that eventually Banquo's son would eventually rule though Macbeth still tried to become king. He should have known the witches were playing with his mind and he would be killed.


You see Macbeth could have lived a long happy life with or without his wife if he had done the right thing. It was Macbeth's own fault for creating something out of nothing.

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Literary Devices

Comic Relief: "Knock, knock, knock! Who's there, i' the name of Belzebub?" (Porter, 2.3. 3-4). In this scene, a drunken porter is making 'knock, knock' jokes and this is an example of a comic relief because the scene was added to lighten the mood after Duncan's murder.


Tragic Hero: "My thought, whose murder yet is but fantastical" (Macbeth, 1.3. 160). In this scene, Macbeth has a flaw, he wants king, and doesn't know it yet but is capable of murder. Murder has entered his mind before his wife has even heard the news.


Aside: "The Prince of Cumberland! That is a step on which I must fall down, or else o'erleap, for in my way it lies. Stars, hide your fires! Let not light see my black and deep desires" (Macbeth 1.4. 55-59). The aside creates a dramatic effect where the audience or readers know a character's (Macbeth's) thoughts and no one else knows or can hear.


Foil: "As the Weird Women promised; and I fear thou play'dst most foully for't" (Banquo 3.1. 2-3). Throughout the story, Banquo begins to foil Macbeth as he is seen as the opposite, good version of Macbeth.

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Art vs. Literature

This piece of art, I believe represents Macbeth's downfall, as the man in the painting has an "abstract" mind. This represents Macbeth as he seems to have trouble making good decisions. Macbeth has abstract thoughts that eventually lead to his downfall. "Art thou not, fatal vision, sensible..." (Macbeth 2.1. 45-46). Macbeth has hallucinations that drive him mad. Macbeth becomes "abstract".

Character Analysis

Macbeth was motivated to kill Duncan and become king by the witches, his wife, and himself. His ambition to become king overwhelmed him and started to let his ambition cloud his judgement. Macbeth was a content little Thane. He was a war hero, who was rewarded with Thane of Cawdor, after he sliced a man in half. So as you can see he was a pretty gruesome man, even before the witched told him the prophecy. "For brave Macbeth, Disdaining Fortune, with his brandish steel, which smoked with bloody execution, carved out his passage till he faced the slave..." (Captain 1.2.17-22). But just because Macbeth was a courageous war hero, it doesn't mean it was easy for him to kill Duncan. Actually Macbeth was against it at first. It put a lot of emotional stress on him. "I'll go no more. I am afraid to think what I have done; Look on't again I dare not" (Macbeth 2.2.69-71). I guess Duncan really is Donuts! Afterward, Macbeth started his spiral downward when he started seeing Banquo's ghost. "Avaunt, and quit my sight...Thy bones are marrowless, thy blood is cold; thou hast no speculation in those eyes which thou dost glare with!" (Macbeth 3.4.116-120).
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