Macbeth - "Fear is the primary emotion of the Macbeth universe"

Essay by krisworldHigh School, 12th gradeB, March 2004

download word file, 5 pages 5.0

To say that the primary emotion of the Macbeth universe is fear is a very accurate statement after reading William Shakespeare's 1606 production. Macbeth is a play where fear leads to fear which creates fear whereby every scene and action is in response to a fear of some sort. Macbeth the character is a man living in fear who cannot escape the continuous cycle without creating more and more fear as he deepens himself even further into a situation from which he cannot possibly escape. Macbeth is an extremely ambitious man who, throughout the life of the play, has one ambition: to become king. For Macbeth, this is arguably his biggest detriment for it puts him in such a situation which he cannot escape from. In act 1 scene 2, Macbeth is given a prophesy by the witches that he will be king. This fires his ambition and he therefore takes the obvious initiative to do everything in his power to ensure that he defends King Duncan to the best of his ability.

As a consequence of his brave and heroic actions, Duncan makes known his gratitude for all Macbeth's work and effort in defending him. "O Valiant cousin! Worthy gentleman!" (Line 24) "For brave Macbeth - well he deserves that name (Line 16). For Macbeth, this comes as good news and is in line with the prophesy of the witches which he has heard. Macbeth is desperate to become King and thinks that by being totally loyal to Duncan, he will achieve this objective. However, in Act 1 Scene 4, Duncan announces that his son Malcolm will be his successor as king of Scotland (Our eldest, Malcolm who we name hereafter the Prince of Cumberland; which honour must" (Line 37 Act 1 Scene 4) which creates a problem for...