In the play Macbeth, William Shakespeare uses the subversion of gender roles to reinforce Elizabethan notions of female and male behavior through the characters of Lady Macbeth, the three witches, and Macbeth. The ideal woman in Shakespearean times was submissive and docile. She is expected to be a mother and hostess, and little else. However, Lady Macbeth is the exact opposite of this notion. She constantly challenges and manipulates her husband to feed her ever-growing ambition.
This coincidentally adds to the assurance of Macbeth’s prophecy which is that Macbeth will become king, but King Duncan is still alive. Moreover, this realization leads Lady Macbeth to think about murdering King Duncan for her and Macbeth to gain power. In addition to Lady Macbeth’s cruel character, she reveals her desirous thoughts towards the crown. Lady Macbeth continues her speech and mentions her unquenching thirst to take Duncan’s power. “Make thick my blood.
Unfortunately, Lady Macbeth herself lacks the capability to kill Duncan. While she sincerely wishes she was able to complete the act, she asks the spirits if they could “unsex” her so that she would be capable of killing King Duncan (Shakespeare 32). As Lady Macbeth becomes aware of the witches’ prophecy, her ambition prompts her to develop a plan involving Macbeth murdering the king. However, she also suspects that her husband is “too full of the milk of human kindness to catch the nearest way” (Shakespeare 30), and therefore too civil to be able to seize the throne. Throughout her soliloquy that follows, Lady Macbeth finds that the only way to accomplish her goal is to manipulate her husband and convince him to go through with the murder.
Lady Macbeth has high ambition for her spouse. She comprehends that Macbeth has a desire for the throne. Be that as it may, she expects that her spouse would experience difficulty when endeavoring to murder Duncan and want the throne on the grounds that she sees Macbeth as "full o' the milk of human kindness". Since Lady Macbeth realizes that her spouse would never have the capacity to perform such an errand, she chooses to control the of the killing of Duncan. She requests that "direst brutality" debase her.
Her strong desire to have power and Macbeth king becomes strongly evident throughout the play. When Lady Macbeth first receives the letter from Macbeth that holds the witches’ prophecy, she says that Macbeth is “too full of milk of human kindness to catch the nearest way,” ( Act i. V 16-20) meaning that Macbeth is too nice to do anything with ill intentions. When Lady Macbeth tries to convince Macbeth to murder
Lady Macbeth is seen as a noble host and a kind woman, however, this is not so. Her motivation is not one of goodness, but instead, destruction. Lady Macbeth is informed of the plan for King Duncan's executions and immediately begins plotting. Lady Macbeth's eye glisten with betrayal and ambition. She has only one thing in mind at this point: Do whatever it takes to make Macbeth king.
These visions make her believe she has blood on her hands that can’t was off, symbolizing what’s done cannot be undone. Furthermore, she started fearing for her life after Macbeth has sent murders to kill Lady Macduff and her children “Thane of Fife had a wife, where is she now?” (Act 5 Scene 1). The reason being is because Macduff betrayed Macbeth who flees to England. She wasn’t able to deal with it no more and her solution was death. In the end, Lady Macbeth succumbed to her guilt and choose
In his play, Shakespeare portrays Lady Macbeth as a strong, powerful woman who resists the normal gender roles. In one case, she talked to spirits when contemplating the murder of King Duncan. While doing so, she urged, “Come, you evil spirits that tend on mortal thoughts, unsex me here…” (1.5.41-42). Markedly, Lady Macbeth is shown here in this dark scene, asking to be less like a woman; therefore, defying gender roles because
However, his actions are not determine by himself, but at the hands of his dominant wife, which, through her selfish desire for authority, absence of emotion and management of Macbeth creates a cycle of death. Lady Macbeth’s initial desire for strength sprouted from her selfish ambition
The Weird Sisters answer to Hecate and her need for control is evident when she is infuriated by their dialog with Macbeth. By speaking of “riddles and affairs of death,” (Shakespeare 373) the Weird Sisters stepped out of line without their leaders’ permission. Being the “close contriver of all harms,” Hecate is enraged at the fact she was “never called to bear [her] part” (Shakespeare 373) in the handling of Macbeth’s prophesy. She wishes to control everything under the “umbrella” of spells and witchcraft. Although she is considered a goddess, the simple principle of her sexuality and influence coincides with female dominance.