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Macbeth GCSE

Would anyone mind giving me some feedback for the following introduction, would it be a strong one for a GCSE examiner?

The question asks how Shakespeare presents ambition in act 1 scene 5 and throughout the play.
In the tragic play of Macbeth, Shakespeare presents ambition as a hamartia which leads to Macbeth's downfall. Overall Shakespeare aims to remind a Jacobean audience not to have too much ambition and power; he does this so that he can gain the respect of the king especially after there was a failed assassination attempt on James I. In Act 1 Scene 5 we see this motif of ambition in Lady Macbeth's soliloquy where she reveals her evil intentions. The following essay examines how Shakespeare presents ambition in this scene and how he does so throughout the play.
This was more of an explanation than exploring the idea. To reach level 6 you need to explore idea through giving points. The points that you will give should also be points in your paragraph. Your introduction can be like:

In the tragic play of Macbeth, Shakespeare presents ambition as a hamartia which leads to Macbeth's downfall. Firstly, we see ambition through Macbeth on committing regicide. Later on we see ambition through Lady Macbeth where she makes sure that she becomes queen and Macbeth becomes King............
Reply 2
Original post by Walnut23
This was more of an explanation than exploring the idea. To reach level 6 you need to explore idea through giving points. The points that you will give should also be points in your paragraph. Your introduction can be like:

In the tragic play of Macbeth, Shakespeare presents ambition as a hamartia which leads to Macbeth's downfall. Firstly, we see ambition through Macbeth on committing regicide. Later on we see ambition through Lady Macbeth where she makes sure that she becomes queen and Macbeth becomes King............


Thanks so much for the feedback! I will try incorporate some of your ideas.
Reply 3
By the way

Original post by Walnut23
This was more of an explanation than exploring the idea. To reach level 6 you need to explore idea through giving points. The points that you will give should also be points in your paragraph. Your introduction can be like:

In the tragic play of Macbeth, Shakespeare presents ambition as a hamartia which leads to Macbeth's downfall. Firstly, we see ambition through Macbeth on committing regicide. Later on we see ambition through Lady Macbeth where she makes sure that she becomes queen and Macbeth becomes King............


By the way shouldn't it be an explanation as it's an introduction?
You are absolutely right but to hit that high level, you need to explain your ideas and explore. It does not mean to explain the whole play. You should explain and explore any ideas related to the question.
Original post by VoiidDev
By the way



By the way shouldn't it be an explanation as it's an introduction?
Reply 5
Original post by Walnut23
You are absolutely right but to hit that high level, you need to explain your ideas and explore. It does not mean to explain the whole play. You should explain and explore any ideas related to the question.


Thank you so much again for your advice! I am so sorry, I'd you wouldn't mind could you please give me an example of how I can explore something in my introduction?
Just see what the question is about and explore the idea. You can say like........

Ambition was seen through they play in Macbeth. Firstly, we see ambition of Lady Macbeth to become genderless. Then, we see Macbeth's ambition on becoming King. After that we see..................

This is how you explore your idea. Once you made at least 3 points in your introduction. You can write them as Peter or pretzel paragraph. Throw some quotes. Do grade 9 analysis. Throw a bit of context. Describe the reaction of Jacobean era vs 21st century readers. To hit even high marks you should raise an argument against your point as you can say In contrast some readers would suggest that it was not Macbeth's ambition, it was lady Macbeth's ambition......

The stuff that I have told you is grade 9. Please add them in your answer.
Original post by VoiidDev
Thank you so much again for your advice! I am so sorry, I'd you wouldn't mind could you please give me an example of how I can explore something in my introduction?
Reply 7
Original post by Walnut23
Just see what the question is about and explore the idea. You can say like........

Ambition was seen through they play in Macbeth. Firstly, we see ambition of Lady Macbeth to become genderless. Then, we see Macbeth's ambition on becoming King. After that we see..................

This is how you explore your idea. Once you made at least 3 points in your introduction. You can write them as Peter or pretzel paragraph. Throw some quotes. Do grade 9 analysis. Throw a bit of context. Describe the reaction of Jacobean era vs 21st century readers. To hit even high marks you should raise an argument against your point as you can say In contrast some readers would suggest that it was not Macbeth's ambition, it was lady Macbeth's ambition......

The stuff that I have told you is grade 9. Please add them in your answer.


Hi! Thank you so much for your valuable help! If you wouldn't mind would you please read a body paragraph (I tried to incorporate what you told me) and give me some advice along with a realistic mark our of 30 on how much I would've gotten if my other paragraphs were exactly at the same standard? Thank yu so much one again for the help!

In Lady Macbeth's soliloquy (Act 1 Scene 5) Shakespeare presents the theme of ambition (particularly for power) as something which can easily cause the corruption of a person - in this case, Lady Macbeth. This can clearly be seen in the metaphor "yet do I fear thy nature, / It is too full o’th’milk of human kindness ". The fact that Lady Macbeth is scrutinising the unwillingness of Macbeth to commit regicide (one of the worst crimes possible during the Jacobean Era) shows the destruction of her morality - this is done because of her having too much ambition for power. We see the extent of this corruptness through the symbolism of "milk". "Milk" has connotations and is symbolic of purity, kindness, and the act of nurturing others. The fact that Lady Macbeth is looking down on such cherishable and noble traits shows that her goodness has been destroyed due to her ambition. Shakespeare uses this scene to serve as a reminder not to have too much ambition -especially for power- otherwise, your morality may be destroyed leading to you performing actions (leading to consequences such as going to hell or being driven mad) which you start to lose control over. We also see this idea of ambition corrupting and destroying the morality of a character (Macbeth) in Act 3 Scene 3. In this scene, Macbeth meets Banquo’s ghost whose death was ordered by Macbeth and the audience learns the extent of how evil and cruel his murder was. This can be seen in the hyperbolic metaphor in “Ay, and a bold one, that might dare look on that / Which might appal the devil”. The hyperbole exaggerates how bad the murder was but more importantly exemplifies the idea that Macbeth is performing callous actions due to his ambition to remain in power as king. The allusion of “devil” shows how horrid the murder of Banquo is -so bad that it might horrify the evillest of people- showing how corrupt Macbeth has become (he has become corrupt as he ordered such actions). Furthermore, Lady Macbeth does not know about this horrid act which builds dramatic irony showing that ambition is making Macbeth’s and Lady Macbeth’s relationship start to be distant. This scene aligns with the Jacobean belief of the supernatural and that you may be haunted (for example by ghosts) for bad actions. Although a modern audience might not be much affected by this scene a contemporary one would certainly feel intrigued by such an idea.

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