The Student Room Group

Macbeth???

What are the themes and which are the most important?! Really struggling as I have a terrible English teacher who spouts BS and everything on the internet is different.Thank you :smile:
Reply 1
Original post by charlottes.04
What are the themes and which are the most important?! Really struggling as I have a terrible English teacher who spouts BS and everything on the internet is different.Thank you :smile:

Sorry i don't know
Reply 2
Original post by ivanita12
Sorry i don't know

Thanks for trying lol
Reply 3
Original post by ivanita12
Sorry i don't know

Sorry
Reply 4
Original post by charlottes.04
What are the themes and which are the most important?! Really struggling as I have a terrible English teacher who spouts BS and everything on the internet is different.Thank you :smile:

Hello! I got a 9 in english literature and some themes which I have found online which I used are here: good versus evil, the dangers of ambition, the influence of supernatural forces, the contrast between appearance and reality, loyalty and guilt. If you have any questions i'd be happy to provide quotations or even examples if I can find them of some of my higher marked past paper answers!
Reply 5
Original post by charlottes.04
What are the themes and which are the most important?! Really struggling as I have a terrible English teacher who spouts BS and everything on the internet is different.Thank you :smile:

some themes you could look at are: supernatural, religion, ambition and greed, 7 deadly sins, good vs evil,
Reply 6
Original post by xEnergizer
Hello! I got a 9 in english literature and some themes which I have found online which I used are here: good versus evil, the dangers of ambition, the influence of supernatural forces, the contrast between appearance and reality, loyalty and guilt. If you have any questions i'd be happy to provide quotations or even examples if I can find them of some of my higher marked past paper answers!

Thank you SO much! Hate to be that person but if you could send some of those higher answers please lol. I am really struggling with the gcse course; my grades have dropped from an 8 to a 3&4 so I REALLY appreciate your help
Reply 7
Original post by bluegray
some themes you could look at are: supernatural, religion, ambition and greed, 7 deadly sins, good vs evil,

Thank you, I hadn't considered the seven sins
Reply 8
Original post by charlottes.04
Thank you SO much! Hate to be that person but if you could send some of those higher answers please lol. I am really struggling with the gcse course; my grades have dropped from an 8 to a 3&4 so I REALLY appreciate your help

Of course! Also, if you have dropped from those high grades, it may be useful for you to go back and see what you are doing differently, perhaps speak to a different english teacher who you think might be able to help you as well?

This is one of my answers which I could find, it may not be perfect but definitely a high marking answer (it is one of my earlier answers)

Shakespeare's powerful morality play,” Macbeth” explores dutifully and expertly the effects that leadership both rightful and not has on the person and society at large. It is no doubt that the absolute power that Macbeth attempts to maintain corrupts his mind and the land around him due to his desire for it being selfish. This is evident in the surrounding area which becomes chaotic and hostile, wildlife such as the “Mousing owl” eating a large bird of prey and the horses turning on each other, this use of imagery certainly being unsettling to both the modern and Shakespearian audience. However, it could be said that the lack of power which other characters such as Banquo and Lady Macbeth retain cause the same quantity of chaos throughout Scotland; Banquo shows the qualities of Leadership in his virtuous personality, seeking to advise Macbeth not to listen to the three Witches after their first appearance, yet evidently lacking the power to enforce such advice; Lady Macbeth on the other hand has gained control and leadership, though she lacks the power to control such a heavy task without the support of Divine power which is taught to the audience to cause great mental malady throughout the play. The varying presentations of leadership contribute to Shakespeare’s overall message which is to warn us not to indulge in selfish desires, as well as critique those who go against God’s Divine Right of Kings and the Great Chain of Being for it will cause a great descent into chaos for all involved.

Within the extract the idea of natural leadership - gained through rightful power - is mentioned and contrasted with the corrupt power - which Macbeth manipulates - by Malcom, presenting the chaos which ensues the disregard of God’s Divine Right of Kings. This can be seen in the differing connotations which the words “Planted”, and “Butcher” have, one has the possibility to grow and create (referencing Malcom as the rightful King who now has the potential to grow in power and respect) and the other can only cause death and destruction (this being Macbeth who murdered the rightful king with “Violent hands”). At this point in the play, Macbeth has reached his downfall due to his great hamartia (this being his indulgence in his selfish desires) and is the epitome of what happens to those who reject God’s overarching power and influence. This is a stark contrast from his virtuous self at the beginning of the play, we watch as he falls victim to his own selfish desires and is influenced by the Witches ambiguous language. Even within the extract, Macbeth has lost his title and even his name, a clear display of his lack of power and lost title of leadership. This unsettling difference leaves the audience to believe that any person, as noble as they may seem, can weaken if they go against God’s rules (The Divine Right of Being) and Leadership, no matter if supported by absolute power, can be thwarted if it is not Divinely approved like Malcom’s, which is regarded as long lasting due to the repetition of “Time” within the extract.

Furthermore, at the beginning of the play, we see Macbeths inner turmoil regarding his guilty conscience caused by his alarming thoughts of killing the great King Duncan. Shakespeare’s use of allusion to the Roman god of the waters and seas (Neptune) in the line, “Will Neptunes ocean wash this blood from my hand” presents Macbeths desperation to rid himself of the guilt he is feeling, expressing that he does not think that anything less than Divine power can help him now. This is when Lady Macbeth obtains her power over him, even more so than when she had ordered him to kill King Duncan. A woman gaining leadership and power within the relationship is unheard of and causes chaos for both characters involved. Lady Macbeth, much like Macbeth, has absolute power in her leadership which causes her to falter and lose control over her own mind; this sending her down a spiral to which she escapes through death after “Sleepwalking”. The effects of her untrue leadership caused disharmony for her mind, even is sleep she has a lack of rest or peace as the action is contrasted by her involuntary movement, or “walking”. Similarly, Macbeth “doth murdered sleep” in the case of King Duncan, killing him and peace for the country as a whole and foreshadowing the chaos which is caused by this death of rest and peace. This is reflected in Macbeths strangling guilt that even makes him murder the valiant Banquo, his close friend, causes him to see his ghost. Red blood seeps through the white cloth of the dinner table, signalling the spread of impurity, guilt and evil that begins to infect him and the land surrounding him.

In a contrasting aspect, Banquo is employed as a foil character for accentuating Macbeths nasty and dishonourable leadership, his selfish interests and undesirable leadership qualities. The morally good character does not seek the prophecy which has been told by the three witches, his caution for trusting them surpassing even the great King Duncans lack of caution when trusting the past Thane of Cawdor (and soon Macbeth), presenting true righteous leadership qualities that are predetermined to rise to the throne in the form of his descendants. This expertly presents Shakespeare's true message that a leader chosen by God’s Divine wisdom cannot fall victim to selfish desires and becomes “timeless” as he even reappears as a ghost to attempt to remind Macbeth of his guilt and force him to atone for his sins, making him seem unfit to rule in front of the Scottish Thanes so that he falls back into his true place as the Thane of Glamis and Cawdor. Though Macbeth does not listen to his late friend's advice, instead yelling, “Never shake thy glory locks at me”. Perhaps, Shakespeare wants to present his fear for the truth that his rulership cannot last, by presenting him as afraid of seeing what a true King is or the disappointment that his friend has for him, desperate in Shakespeare’s use of an imperative sentence which presents him as foolish for thinking he can control someone who has power over his mind. This supports Shakespeare’s critique of those who decide to turn against God’s Divine Right of Kings and The Great Chain of Being, and the inner chaos which follows this soon to become external as it spreads like a great malady through Scotland before order is restored by Malcom and Macduff.

Overall, Shakespeare presents Macbeth as an unruly leader with great external power and weakness in his wilting mind due to his lack of Divine approval. He is seen to lose his grip on reality and his once hard followed morals that were seen at the very start of the play, to being controlled by a woman (unheard of to the Jacobean audience) and haunted by the ghost of his friend that represents his guilt; until he finally is stripped of his power and leadership, only regarded as a “Dead butcher”, titled lower than his “fiend like queen” and succeeded by Malcom, who is truly called upon by the “grace of Grace.”
Original post by charlottes.04
What are the themes and which are the most important?! Really struggling as I have a terrible English teacher who spouts BS and everything on the internet is different.Thank you :smile:

trust me you man youtube is a life saver https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QV9S3tBskB8
Original post by xEnergizer
Of course! Also, if you have dropped from those high grades, it may be useful for you to go back and see what you are doing differently, perhaps speak to a different english teacher who you think might be able to help you as well?
This is one of my answers which I could find, it may not be perfect but definitely a high marking answer (it is one of my earlier answers)
Shakespeare's powerful morality play,” Macbeth” explores dutifully and expertly the effects that leadership both rightful and not has on the person and society at large. It is no doubt that the absolute power that Macbeth attempts to maintain corrupts his mind and the land around him due to his desire for it being selfish. This is evident in the surrounding area which becomes chaotic and hostile, wildlife such as the “Mousing owl” eating a large bird of prey and the horses turning on each other, this use of imagery certainly being unsettling to both the modern and Shakespearian audience. However, it could be said that the lack of power which other characters such as Banquo and Lady Macbeth retain cause the same quantity of chaos throughout Scotland; Banquo shows the qualities of Leadership in his virtuous personality, seeking to advise Macbeth not to listen to the three Witches after their first appearance, yet evidently lacking the power to enforce such advice; Lady Macbeth on the other hand has gained control and leadership, though she lacks the power to control such a heavy task without the support of Divine power which is taught to the audience to cause great mental malady throughout the play. The varying presentations of leadership contribute to Shakespeare’s overall message which is to warn us not to indulge in selfish desires, as well as critique those who go against God’s Divine Right of Kings and the Great Chain of Being for it will cause a great descent into chaos for all involved.
Within the extract the idea of natural leadership - gained through rightful power - is mentioned and contrasted with the corrupt power - which Macbeth manipulates - by Malcom, presenting the chaos which ensues the disregard of God’s Divine Right of Kings. This can be seen in the differing connotations which the words “Planted”, and “Butcher” have, one has the possibility to grow and create (referencing Malcom as the rightful King who now has the potential to grow in power and respect) and the other can only cause death and destruction (this being Macbeth who murdered the rightful king with “Violent hands”). At this point in the play, Macbeth has reached his downfall due to his great hamartia (this being his indulgence in his selfish desires) and is the epitome of what happens to those who reject God’s overarching power and influence. This is a stark contrast from his virtuous self at the beginning of the play, we watch as he falls victim to his own selfish desires and is influenced by the Witches ambiguous language. Even within the extract, Macbeth has lost his title and even his name, a clear display of his lack of power and lost title of leadership. This unsettling difference leaves the audience to believe that any person, as noble as they may seem, can weaken if they go against God’s rules (The Divine Right of Being) and Leadership, no matter if supported by absolute power, can be thwarted if it is not Divinely approved like Malcom’s, which is regarded as long lasting due to the repetition of “Time” within the extract.
Furthermore, at the beginning of the play, we see Macbeths inner turmoil regarding his guilty conscience caused by his alarming thoughts of killing the great King Duncan. Shakespeare’s use of allusion to the Roman god of the waters and seas (Neptune) in the line, “Will Neptunes ocean wash this blood from my hand” presents Macbeths desperation to rid himself of the guilt he is feeling, expressing that he does not think that anything less than Divine power can help him now. This is when Lady Macbeth obtains her power over him, even more so than when she had ordered him to kill King Duncan. A woman gaining leadership and power within the relationship is unheard of and causes chaos for both characters involved. Lady Macbeth, much like Macbeth, has absolute power in her leadership which causes her to falter and lose control over her own mind; this sending her down a spiral to which she escapes through death after “Sleepwalking”. The effects of her untrue leadership caused disharmony for her mind, even is sleep she has a lack of rest or peace as the action is contrasted by her involuntary movement, or “walking”. Similarly, Macbeth “doth murdered sleep” in the case of King Duncan, killing him and peace for the country as a whole and foreshadowing the chaos which is caused by this death of rest and peace. This is reflected in Macbeths strangling guilt that even makes him murder the valiant Banquo, his close friend, causes him to see his ghost. Red blood seeps through the white cloth of the dinner table, signalling the spread of impurity, guilt and evil that begins to infect him and the land surrounding him.
In a contrasting aspect, Banquo is employed as a foil character for accentuating Macbeths nasty and dishonourable leadership, his selfish interests and undesirable leadership qualities. The morally good character does not seek the prophecy which has been told by the three witches, his caution for trusting them surpassing even the great King Duncans lack of caution when trusting the past Thane of Cawdor (and soon Macbeth), presenting true righteous leadership qualities that are predetermined to rise to the throne in the form of his descendants. This expertly presents Shakespeare's true message that a leader chosen by God’s Divine wisdom cannot fall victim to selfish desires and becomes “timeless” as he even reappears as a ghost to attempt to remind Macbeth of his guilt and force him to atone for his sins, making him seem unfit to rule in front of the Scottish Thanes so that he falls back into his true place as the Thane of Glamis and Cawdor. Though Macbeth does not listen to his late friend's advice, instead yelling, “Never shake thy glory locks at me”. Perhaps, Shakespeare wants to present his fear for the truth that his rulership cannot last, by presenting him as afraid of seeing what a true King is or the disappointment that his friend has for him, desperate in Shakespeare’s use of an imperative sentence which presents him as foolish for thinking he can control someone who has power over his mind. This supports Shakespeare’s critique of those who decide to turn against God’s Divine Right of Kings and The Great Chain of Being, and the inner chaos which follows this soon to become external as it spreads like a great malady through Scotland before order is restored by Malcom and Macduff.
Overall, Shakespeare presents Macbeth as an unruly leader with great external power and weakness in his wilting mind due to his lack of Divine approval. He is seen to lose his grip on reality and his once hard followed morals that were seen at the very start of the play, to being controlled by a woman (unheard of to the Jacobean audience) and haunted by the ghost of his friend that represents his guilt; until he finally is stripped of his power and leadership, only regarded as a “Dead butcher”, titled lower than his “fiend like queen” and succeeded by Malcom, who is truly called upon by the “grace of Grace.”


That is an incredible answer well done, and thank you for taking the time to send it! I will definitely dig up an old book and have a look tbh I think I struggle most with timing but thanks again!
Original post by raucous-tundra
trust me you man youtube is a life saver https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QV9S3tBskB8


thank youuuu I will have a look now!

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