Boy_Man
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My English teacher gave me a grade 8-9 on this Macbeth answer and i think he may have graded it too high can someone check it if it is 8-9 quality

Question: How is Macbeth's and Lady Macbeth's relationship portrayed in the source and whole play

Response:

Shakespeare in this extract portrays the relationship between Macbeth and Lady Macbeth as one that relies on the subservience and the obedience of Macbeth and orbits around the dominance of Lady Macbeth's drive and her exploitation of Macbeth's docility.

Macbeth is shown to not have any authority or respect in this relationship and seems to not defend his own stances when it comes to what lady Macbeth asks for him. This is clearly evident when in the statement ‘we will proceed no further in this business’ which is followed up by lady Macbeth bluntly responding, ‘was the hope drunk?’. When Macbeth refuses to even consider the prospect of committing such a transgressive crime like regicide in his first statement Lady Macbeth ridicules him for this suggestion which is connoted in the adjective drunk. When she calls his hope drunk, she refers to his ambition of becoming a monarch. She ridicules him now as his unwillingness and lack of drive to carry out the measures to achieve this goal makes her think this goal of this was nothing but foolish optimism which is also suggested in the verb hope which has undertones of childishness and thoughtless fantasies. Shakespeare does this to make the transition of lady Macbeth's manipulation from simply putting down Macbeth to outright commanding him to heinous acts of murder a smoother one and one that the audience can see as something plausible.

The relationship between Macbeth and lady Macbeth is also portrayed this way by Shakespeare with the way lady Macbeth uses insecurities to control Macbeth which evident in the quote ‘when you durst do it you were a man’ which is what she says to him when he describes himself as a man. She does this to challenge his masculinity as the verb ‘durst’ connotes that the fact that when he did consider carrying out his intentions he was ‘manly’ and that by going against his word and presenting this cowardly and ‘womanly’ behavior to his wife is shameful. This also reflects the context of the time this play was written in as Shakespeare uses the social expectations of men in the Scottish warrior culture which prevailed at the time to immerse the audience in this play. Macbeth not wanting his own wife the woman he should be protecting calling him cowardly or unmanly destroys his confidence in himself and quickly he falls in line.

However, the relationship in the play evolves and the power dynamic could also be argued to be in both members favor and that the power they hold over each other is equal. Shakespeare presents this symbiosis between these two through the co-dependency that is shown throughout the play. This can be argued to be the case when the quote ‘I have no spur’. In this quote Macbeth's spur represents his ambition and the obsession he has with claiming the throne however he does not have the drive, nor the bloodthirst required to bring these ambitions into fruition. This is however achieved through the collaboration with Lady Macbeth and her drive for his ambition is used to convince him to carry it out. Without the practicality of Macbeth and without the rationality of Lady Macbeth Duncan would not be killed, and both need each other to progress their plan. While Shakespeare presents lady Macbeth as this domineering woman that she is at the start of the play she becomes much more vulnerable and declines in her ability to dominate Macbeth when he goes mad with his lust for power. The dynamics of power in this relationship shift from the start of the play to entice the audience and most importantly done by Shakespeare to challenge gender roles to ultimately make his play stand out and shock people.
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Mona123456
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(Original post by Boy_Man)
My English teacher gave me a grade 8-9 on this Macbeth answer and i think he may have graded it too high can someone check it if it is 8-9 quality

Question: How is Macbeth's and Lady Macbeth's relationship portrayed in the source and whole play

Response:

Shakespeare in this extract portrays the relationship between Macbeth and Lady Macbeth as one that relies on the subservience and the obedience of Macbeth and orbits around the dominance of Lady Macbeth's drive and her exploitation of Macbeth's docility.

Macbeth is shown to not have any authority or respect in this relationship and seems to not defend his own stances when it comes to what lady Macbeth asks for him. This is clearly evident when in the statement ‘we will proceed no further in this business’ which is followed up by lady Macbeth bluntly responding, ‘was the hope drunk?’. When Macbeth refuses to even consider the prospect of committing such a transgressive crime like regicide in his first statement Lady Macbeth ridicules him for this suggestion which is connoted in the adjective drunk. When she calls his hope drunk, she refers to his ambition of becoming a monarch. She ridicules him now as his unwillingness and lack of drive to carry out the measures to achieve this goal makes her think this goal of this was nothing but foolish optimism which is also suggested in the verb hope which has undertones of childishness and thoughtless fantasies. Shakespeare does this to make the transition of lady Macbeth's manipulation from simply putting down Macbeth to outright commanding him to heinous acts of murder a smoother one and one that the audience can see as something plausible.

The relationship between Macbeth and lady Macbeth is also portrayed this way by Shakespeare with the way lady Macbeth uses insecurities to control Macbeth which evident in the quote ‘when you durst do it you were a man’ which is what she says to him when he describes himself as a man. She does this to challenge his masculinity as the verb ‘durst’ connotes that the fact that when he did consider carrying out his intentions he was ‘manly’ and that by going against his word and presenting this cowardly and ‘womanly’ behavior to his wife is shameful. This also reflects the context of the time this play was written in as Shakespeare uses the social expectations of men in the Scottish warrior culture which prevailed at the time to immerse the audience in this play. Macbeth not wanting his own wife the woman he should be protecting calling him cowardly or unmanly destroys his confidence in himself and quickly he falls in line.

However, the relationship in the play evolves and the power dynamic could also be argued to be in both members favor and that the power they hold over each other is equal. Shakespeare presents this symbiosis between these two through the co-dependency that is shown throughout the play. This can be argued to be the case when the quote ‘I have no spur’. In this quote Macbeth's spur represents his ambition and the obsession he has with claiming the throne however he does not have the drive, nor the bloodthirst required to bring these ambitions into fruition. This is however achieved through the collaboration with Lady Macbeth and her drive for his ambition is used to convince him to carry it out. Without the practicality of Macbeth and without the rationality of Lady Macbeth Duncan would not be killed, and both need each other to progress their plan. While Shakespeare presents lady Macbeth as this domineering woman that she is at the start of the play she becomes much more vulnerable and declines in her ability to dominate Macbeth when he goes mad with his lust for power. The dynamics of power in this relationship shift from the start of the play to entice the audience and most importantly done by Shakespeare to challenge gender roles to ultimately make his play stand out and shock people.
I would probably say Grade 8 (but I’m not an English teacher or examiner). For the 9 I would say you could do with another couple of quotes at the end to highlight how the power dynamic shifts (e.g. a quote from Act 5) and you need a little more language analysis just stating the basics of literary techniques. You could also have questioned why the relationship is presented the way it is, and link it to Shakespeare’s purpose and wider themes (you did a little bit could have done more). But, it’s overall a strong essay and I feel it would hit a Grade 8 standard, perhaps even a Grade 9 just about. Well done
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username4903866
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#3
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I wouldn’t mark this a nine - probably an eight because of the good vocab but your lack of punctuation especially commas makes it difficult to read - some vocab is not collocated well and has been used in a way that is grammatically incorrect
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Boy_Man
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(Original post by syrialove1981)
I wouldn’t mark this a nine - probably an eight because of the good vocab but your lack of punctuation especially commas makes it difficult to read - some vocab is not collocated well and has been used in a way that is grammatically incorrect
Thanks for the feedback can you tell me which words were used incorrectly?
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Ðeggs
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Grade 8 standard I would say. I really like the points you have made, and your vocabulary is excellent, but I think you can focus on the analysis at little bit more, and explain the impact of the quote or the action in the play a little bit better. But an excellent response.
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giella
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#6
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I would give this a 7 (I’ve worked as an examiner, tutor and lecturer). Good vocabulary, fairly well selected evidence and well structured points but your analysis is weak. Aside from one good point about structure, you rely on single word analysis and labelling parts of speech (incorrectly on one occasion, I might add). Red rag to a bull for many examiners and simply not sufficient to access the highest tiers of the Mark scheme.

A strength of yours is that you consider the context of your quotes, identifying when one character is ridiculing another, for instance, which secured your AO3. However, to push up your AO3 and secure your AO2, you need to consider the significance of this context and its relationship to language. Consider Lady Macbeth saying to her husband “if you durst do it you were a man.” AO3 might focus on the abusive and ridiculing behaviour of Lady Macbeth, her incitement of her husband to violence, her attempt to define his masculinity in terms of his willingness to do violence, something which strikes a chord in the 21st century context of ongoing discussions about the nature of masculinity. But then consider the language she uses: it is blunt and unequivocal, no cushioning in the language to soften the blow she is dealing to his masculinity and his ego, the fact, even, that she makes his masculinity conditional rather than unequivocal fact. It’s that bluntness of language and her sneering that ensures that the blow lands as it does, not the fact that the word “durst” is a verb or that it means “dare”.

Relationship between context and language is a golden ticket to the higher grades. When you find yourself focusing on single word analysis, you’ve fallen into a trap that’s quite difficult to get out of. You’ve zoomed in too far and you’ve lost the relationship with context, which is key to meaning. Words can mean different things in different context. Context is key.
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Boy_Man
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#7
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(Original post by giella)
I would give this a 7 (I’ve worked as an examiner, tutor and lecturer). Good vocabulary, fairly well selected evidence and well structured points but your analysis is weak. Aside from one good point about structure, you rely on single word analysis and labelling parts of speech (incorrectly on one occasion, I might add). Red rag to a bull for many examiners and simply not sufficient to access the highest tiers of the Mark scheme.

A strength of yours is that you consider the context of your quotes, identifying when one character is ridiculing another, for instance, which secured your AO3. However, to push up your AO3 and secure your AO2, you need to consider the significance of this context and its relationship to language. Consider Lady Macbeth saying to her husband “if you durst do it you were a man.” AO3 might focus on the abusive and ridiculing behaviour of Lady Macbeth, her incitement of her husband to violence, her attempt to define his masculinity in terms of his willingness to do violence, something which strikes a chord in the 21st century context of ongoing discussions about the nature of masculinity. But then consider the language she uses: it is blunt and unequivocal, no cushioning in the language to soften the blow she is dealing to his masculinity and his ego, the fact, even, that she makes his masculinity conditional rather than unequivocal fact. It’s that bluntness of language and her sneering that ensures that the blow lands as it does, not the fact that the word “durst” is a verb or that it means “dare”.

Relationship between context and language is a golden ticket to the higher grades. When you find yourself focusing on single word analysis, you’ve fallen into a trap that’s quite difficult to get out of. You’ve zoomed in too far and you’ve lost the relationship with context, which is key to meaning. Words can mean different things in different context. Context is key.
Thanks for the response the reason I focused on single words is because my teacher places a lot of importance on analysing key words of a quote rather than the whole quote so should I avoid doing this?
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giella
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Every examiner's report has commented on this issue since the new specifications were rolled out. Single word analysis isn’t useful in the majority of cases. Labelling a word a verb or a noun etc. is pointless. It really doesn’t add anything and, as you yourself have demonstrated, you don’t know enough about grammar and syntax to be sure you’re getting it right. You will be marked down for getting it wrong.
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giella
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Has your teacher also told you that pathetic fallacy means the weather?
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Boy_Man
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#10
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(Original post by giella)
Has your teacher also told you that pathetic fallacy means the weather?
lol yes
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giella
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(Original post by Boy_Man)
lol yes
Then you can afford to ignore your teacher on more than one matter.
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