sohail to tazzy

Essay by tasneemy October 2014

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Macbeth's Atmosphere there are many questions concerning the atmosphere in William Shakespeare's Macbeth that this essay will answer: Is it realistic or unrealistic? Are there two atmospheres - one of purity and one of black magic? And many other questions. Roger Warren comments in Shakespeare Survey 30, regarding Trevor Nunn's direction of Macbeth at Stratford-upon-Avon in 1974-75, on opposing imagery used to support the opposing atmospheres of purity and black magic: Much of the approach and detail was carried over, particularly the clash between religious purity and black magic. Purity was embodied by Duncan, very infirm (in 1974 he was blind), dressed in white and accompanied by church organ music, set against the black magic of the witches, who even chanted 'Double, double to the Dies Irae. (283) L.C. Knights in the essay "Macbeth" mentions equivocation, unreality and unnaturalness in the play - contributors to an atmosphere that may not be very realistic: The equivocal nature of temptation, the commerce with phantoms consequent upon false choice, the resulting sense of unreality ("nothing is, but what is not"), which has yet such power to "smother" vital function, the unnaturalness of evil ("against the use of nature"), and the relation between disintegration in the individual ("my single state of man") and disorder in the larger social organism - all these are major themes of the play which are mirrored in the speech under consideration.

(94) Charles Lamb in On the Tragedies of Shakespeare comments on the atmosphere surrounding the play: The state of sublime emotion into which we are elevated by those images of night and horror which Macbeth is made to utter, that solemn prelude with which he entertains the time till the bell shall strike which is to call him to murder Duncan, - when we no longer read it...