Macbeth Essay: The theme of Gender

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Leah Brayshaw
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#1
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#1
Hello, sorry I haven’t been active - speaking exam next week! :0
I have done this quick essay on my essay Friday; it may not make sense but my teacher has given me advice to higher my mark above 26.
If possible, please could you give a ephemeral mark for this essay out of 35? Thank you!

How does Shakespeare present the theme of gender?

In Shakespeare’s didactic tragedy, the theme of gender is presented as stereotypical through the witches’ insertions through Lady Macbeth’s antagonist. Shakespeare constructs this to imply how women gender roles are stereotypes as being vulnerable which leads woman’s capabilities to become restricted in society.

Starting with the extract, Shakespeare highlights the theme of gender as stereotypical through the witches’ insertion through Lady Macbeth. Lady Macbeth is presented in the extract sleepwalking as she repetitively says “Out dammed spot, Out I Say!” The use of the imperative command implicates her forceful intakes on try to gain these masculine privileges in order to subvert this patriarchal enforcement. This imperative intake of hers can be interpreted by the witches and how they are acting as stimulates to corrupt Lady Macbeth’s antagonistic mortality to be able to steal Lady Macbeth’s masculine traits to gain these masculine “desires” to become more omnipotent. This links to how Shakespeare constructs the theme of gender and it’s stereotypes against femininity to show how women were saw as vulnerable members of society ad these stereotypes forcefully push woman to restrict their capability in society leaving them to become weaken by the ruling. The implied adjective of “damned” indicates hellish connotations highlights the witches presence in Lady Macbeth’s antagonistic mortality and how they are driving her to gain these masculinity “desires”. This highlights woman’s vulnerability because of the way how the witches have to invade Lady Macbeth’s inner omnipotent morality to envelope it to gain these masculine features in order to break this patriarchal order. This would have further impacted the womanly side of Jacobean society because this would have made women during that era to completely support the witches on their subversion of Lady Macbeth as they would have felt like this at one moment of feeling vulnerable and weak again man himself.


Another way Shakespeare presents the theme of gender as stereotypical is through the witches and how they have inserted themselves into Lady Macbeth to use her ambitious power to conquer these masculine rights. Lady Macbeth is provoked to command her naive husband to “Look like the innocent flower but be the serpent under it”. The use of the facade crafts this supernatural theme which further portrays the theme of gender sue to the fact that in Jacobean times, woman were situated as being this catalyst gender role to intervene with the supernatural and its impact. Shakespeare implies this to portray woman’s vulnerability as they’ll need to take further action to have the rights they are so fulfil of granting. The use of the biblical metaphor of the “serpent” can be further manipulated to be the witches and their insertion on Lady Macbeth to invigorate her power to grant these masculine privileges. The “serpent” crafts these diabolical and blasphemous implications which leads the contemporary audience to believe Lady Macbeth do the fourth implicit witch of ‘Macbeth’. This evokes gender stereotypes and how woman are seen as vulnerable just because of their restricted role in society. This is mimic alongside the witches’ construction and to show how woman have to go to extreme measures to gain this portentous right, as it was viewed in the Jacobean era. The biblical reasoning can be backed up by Lady Macbeth’s craved quotation, “valour of my tongue”. This metaphoric “tongue” can be interpreted as the “serpent”’s and how this element is inserted by the witches themselves to show Lady Macbeth’s lust for power to gain these masculine rights. It can be metaphorically stated that the witches is almost licking the “valour” out of her antagonist so that the witches are invigorating her power in order to fight for this privilege of gaining masculinity. This links back to the gender stereotypes and how woman are left to almost battle out this right which every individually should be entitled to. Linking back to Jacobean society, this would have been reasonably accurate due to the fact that men were overgrown over women and that they had no other option but to fight for this individual ‘consent’ against each other is necessary. This would have implied woman’s vulnerability during these times and how they did not have access to this privilege as they were controlled by their husbands even though they carried out hard labouring for them.

In Shakespeare’s didactic play, the theme of gender is indicated as stereotypical through the witches’ insertion through Lady Macbeth’s mortality to imply feminine roles and how they were mistreated during the period as they had to risk their lives to grant access to these masculine privileges. Lady Macbeth is implied to call upon the “spirits” and command them to “index me here and take my milk for gall”. The association of femininity implicates the stereotypical theme of gender and how Lady Macbeth - as a woman in the play - is evolved around these womanly features and “desires” to trade them for more lustrous ones. The use of involvement with the supernatural can be portrayed the witches are controlling her mortality to gain these privileges also but inserts themselves into her antagonistic mortality to keep their conscience clean, but also due to their “beards”, they would have been outcasted from society and possibility of execution. The use of gender stereotypes can be enveloped through the fact that woman are revolving around this metaphorical womanly nature and how their attachment to this implies their vulnerability throughout the play itself. The use of the omnipotent noun of “gall” also links back to these hellish implications to further portray the witches themselves through Lady Macbeth’s antagonist to show how the witches are downgraded to grant access to these. This biblical imagery of Hell itself can be considered that Lsdy Macbeth is possibly the fourth witch which would make sense why the witches chosen her antagonist to insert themselves in to gain these privileges as Lady Macbeth could act as this metaphorical source to catalyse their achievement together as one. This would have made Jacobean society to fear this connection as they would have been tempted to reflect on the consequences when involving with this element. The stereotypical gender is highlighted through Lady Macbeth and the witches joining up to one to gain these masculine features. However, this mimics Shakespeare’s moral purpose of constructing the theme of gender through the play; imply woman becoming vulnerable as they are being enforced to stay at home. The imperative verb of “unsex” further conveys the theme of gender and how it stimulates stereotypically throughout the didactic play. This evokes Lady Macbeth’s desperation of gaining these machine privileges; she would rather trade her womanly features for these metaphors masculine “desires”.

Another way Shakespeare constructs the theme of gender as being stereotyped is through the witches’ insertion through Lady Macbeth’s antagonist to imply how woman were being stereotyped as vulnerable and weakened members of society and that they will do anything to gain these masculine desires. This is way Shakespeare presents Lady Macbeth into the play to symbolise her blasphemous acts by contacting the supernatural to help her win this “business” and gain these patriarchal powers to become Queen. This emphasises the theme of gender and it’s stereotypical attachment because if the way Lady Macbeth’s femininity craves for such “desires” that she contacts this Supernatural (witches) to elaborate her achievement which foreshadows Lady Macbeth’s vulnerability and weakened antagonist at the dénouement of the play. Lady Macbeth is implied to manipulate her husband once again - ironically stating his protagonist of “wearing a heart so white”. This emasculation against Macbeth implicates Lady Macbeth’s vulnerability due to the fact that the way she takes power is to take her husbands by metaphorically stripping away his masculinity. The symbolical adjective of “white” mimics the witches’ insertion in Lady Macbeth’s antagonist as this connotes emoted implications further exemplifying her corrupted and demoralised mortality due to the witches’ insertion which has overtime invaded and invigorated off her mortal power. This further links back to Shakespeare’s purpose of theme of gender and it’s stereotypes because to indicate the vulnerability of women and how they would have been metaphoric battles between each woman in Jacobean society to gain that specific skills to become more masculine. The use of “white” also obstructs this death imagery which associates in Lady Macbeth’s vulnerability at the resolution of the caricature play because of her capability become corrupted by the witches immortal presence invigorating her “ambition” which she had gained of her husband’s emasculation. The theme of gender stereotypical moral is implied here as women risked their own lives to even try and attempt to gain these masculine privileges to elaborate further with power and freedom.

In conclusion, Shakespeare provoked the theme of gender as stereotypical by inventing the witches’ metaphoric insertion through Lady Macbeth’s antagonist. The allegoric purpose is to indicate how women were portrayed as vulnerable and weak members of society as their capabilities were restricted due to the Patriarchal’s existence.
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tch1161
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#2
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Hi! I'll keep this brief but I really liked the essay and you would definitely get a high mark for it - certainly for my exam board (edexcel) you'd get 19 or 20/20.

Maybe have a look at other characters than Lady Macbeth, e.g. the witches themselves and their construction as androgynous - you touched in this idea with the 'beards' but you could definitely stretch this out and discuss how ambiguous in gender they are; Banquo even has a few lines just discussing their gender.

You could also have a look at Macbeth and Banquo's initial portrayal as strong and fearless fighters, how they 'doubly redoubled strokes against the foe', and the associations of masculinity with violence and bloodlust. Maybe discuss Macbeth's dominance too; e.g. 'be innocent of the knowledge dearest chuck' - a reversal of the gender roles again.

Perhaps also have a look at how characters subvert/conform to gender expectations in relation to grief - Macbeth with 'out out brief candle' and 'she should have died hereafter', and Macduff saying that he must 'handle it like a man', both simultaneously saying he should grieve yet also attack Macbeth for killing his wife.

Just some things to think about! I thought it was a really good essay though and you'd definitely be high up in your top band!
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Leah Brayshaw
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(Original post by tch1161)
Hi! I'll keep this brief but I really liked the essay and you would definitely get a high mark for it - certainly for my exam board (edexcel) you'd get 19 or 20/20.

Maybe have a look at other characters than Lady Macbeth, e.g. the witches themselves and their construction as androgynous - you touched in this idea with the 'beards' but you could definitely stretch this out and discuss how ambiguous in gender they are; Banquo even has a few lines just discussing their gender.

You could also have a look at Macbeth and Banquo's initial portrayal as strong and fearless fighters, how they 'doubly redoubled strokes against the foe', and the associations of masculinity with violence and bloodlust. Maybe discuss Macbeth's dominance too; e.g. 'be innocent of the knowledge dearest chuck' - a reversal of the gender roles again.

Perhaps also have a look at how characters subvert/conform to gender expectations in relation to grief - Macbeth with 'out out brief candle' and 'she should have died hereafter', and Macduff saying that he must 'handle it like a man', both simultaneously saying he should grieve yet also attack Macbeth for killing his wife.

Just some things to think about! I thought it was a really good essay though and you'd definitely be high up in your top band!
Thank yous I much for your feedback!
What would that be as a total grade overall for this single essay?
Last edited by Leah Brayshaw; 2 months ago
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Leah Brayshaw
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#4
Report Thread starter 2 months ago
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(Original post by tch1161)
Hi! I'll keep this brief but I really liked the essay and you would definitely get a high mark for it - certainly for my exam board (edexcel) you'd get 19 or 20/20.

Maybe have a look at other characters than Lady Macbeth, e.g. the witches themselves and their construction as androgynous - you touched in this idea with the 'beards' but you could definitely stretch this out and discuss how ambiguous in gender they are; Banquo even has a few lines just discussing their gender.

You could also have a look at Macbeth and Banquo's initial portrayal as strong and fearless fighters, how they 'doubly redoubled strokes against the foe', and the associations of masculinity with violence and bloodlust. Maybe discuss Macbeth's dominance too; e.g. 'be innocent of the knowledge dearest chuck' - a reversal of the gender roles again.

Perhaps also have a look at how characters subvert/conform to gender expectations in relation to grief - Macbeth with 'out out brief candle' and 'she should have died hereafter', and Macduff saying that he must 'handle it like a man', both simultaneously saying he should grieve yet also attack Macbeth for killing his wife.

Just some things to think about! I thought it was a really good essay though and you'd definitely be high up in your top band!
What grade would that be on that specific essay alone?
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