Essay by samm9887High School, 10th gradeA-, November 2007

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During the Renaissance, the talented playwright, William Shakespeare, wrote many works including Tragedies, Histories, Interludes, Morals, Pastorals, Stage Plays, and Comedies. Shakespeare is the most widely read author in English speaking countries and his works are the most broadly studied in English Literature today. One of his most famous plays, Macbeth, was written during the 1600’s and was very much liked by King James, the King of England at this time. King James enjoyed the fact it related to him very well due to the involvement with his ancestors. Macbeth is mostly categorizes as a tragedy but was mixed in with a little comedy to relate more to people and to really grab the audiences attention.

The play is about having power and complete control. This is what most men strived for at these times. The play opens with the witches coming to Macbeth and predicting he will become King of Scotland one way or another.

When he tells the news to his wife, Lady Macbeth, she convinces Macbeth that he has to take control of this opportunity. She urges him to kill the King of Scotland, who is Duncan, so he can become king and she will become queen. She manipulates him into committing the murder by doing a series of things including having his masculinity challenged. This is in fact, one thing that no man ever wants to have been questioned. Therefore, this can be viewed as Lady Macbeths fault instead of Macbeth.

The fact that people think Macbeth is evil can be called into question. Is he evil for committing the murder or is Lady Macbeth the evil one for manipulating him into doing it? There are many elements in this play that illustrate how Lady Macbeth may appear evil or really is in fact evil. According to the Oxford English Dictionary, evil means: 1. extreme wickedness and depravity, especially when regarded as a supernatural force. 2. something harmful or undesirable. 3. someone or something associated with the devil. During Shakespeare’s time, the ideal woman is meek and lets other tell them what to do. This is the total opposite of Lady Macbeth. She expresses a strong force of wickedness, appears very selfish, and is very manipulative as well.