Paradox An apparent contradiction that is actually true
Tragedy A play, novel, or other narrative depicting serious and important events, in which the main character comes to an unhappy end
Soliloquy When an actor is alone on stage, and speaks about his or her thoughts/feelings; Think of a solo
Aside When an actor says something that is meant for just the audience to hear, not the rest of the audience.
Fatal Flaw The main struggle the main character has; weakness that brings down their downfall
Sleeplessness Macbeth can’t sleep because he is haunted by the people he killedLady Macbeth sleep walks.The witches punishments is to prevent people from sleeping.This is the way Witch 1 get at people; she takes away sleep until they go crazy; this happens to all of their victims/ Macbeth sees ghosts in his sleep, and Lady Macbeth sleep walks
Mixing of Good and Evil Macbeth loses sight between good and evilFair is foul and foul is fairInstead of protecting his people,like a king should do, Macbeth beings to betray them.
Ambition Macbeth’s Fatal Flaw
Supernatural Elements Witches, prophecies, apparitionsThese are things that are beyond human capibilities.
King Duncan The good king of Scotland who is murdered by Macbeth. Bad judge of character
Macbeth General/thane who commits murder, and becomes king.
Lady Macbeth Macbeth’s wife- ruthless woman who lusts for power.
Banquo Macbeth’s friend whom was with Macbeth when he got his first prophecy. He was told that his future lineage would be noblemen. Eventually murdered due to Macbeth’s suspicions.
Macduff His family was murdered by Macbeth. Becomes leader of the crusade set on dethroning Macbeth. Ends up killing Macbeth; he is able to do this because he was born of a c-section
Malcolm Son of Duncan, becomes king after Macbeths death.
Donalbain Duncan’s son and Malcolm’s younger brother
Fate vs Free Will how much of this play is directed by fate and directed by Macbeth; is he directed by supernatural force or he is directing himself towards a supernatural force; controlled by forces beyond his control
Ross and Lennox Two Scottish Nobleman
Fleance Banquo’s son- escapes the murderers Macbeth sent after him. He is the turning of the point of the play.
Lady Macduff Macduffs wife whom is killed to get back at Macduff
Three Murderers Group of people gathered by Macbeth to murder banquo and his son, and Macduff’s wife and children
Witches “Fair is foul and foul is fair…”Mixing of Good and Evil
Macbeth “Tomorrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow, / Creeps in this petty pace from day to day / To the last syllable of recorded time, / And all our yesterdays have lighted fools / the way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle! / Life’s but a walking shadow, a poor player / That struts and frets his hour upon the stage / And then is heard no more: it is a tale / Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, / Signifying nothing.”Nihilism
Macduff “Macduff was from his mother’s womb untimely ripp’d.”
Second Three Prophecies 1. Macbeth doesn’t need to fear until Birnam Woods will rise against him2. No man born of woman can harm him3. Beware of Macduff
Macbeth’s Fatal Flaw Ambition; he chooses to listen to what he knows is wrong
Evil and is ambitious for power; wants Macbeth to kill the king; tells hims he is not a man for killing Duncan; she wants to be a man What is the audience’s impression of Lady Macbeth at the end of Act I? What is her relationship with Macbeth (beyond being his wife)? What details in this act support your impression?
Play is dark starting with thunder and lightning; 3 witches enter; witches power impact Macbeth’s life with prophecies In the very first scene of a play, a dramatist must tell the audience what kind of play they are about to see. What does the brief opening scene of Macbeth reveal about the rest of the play? How does the weather reflect the human passion revealed in the rest of the act?
Banquo’s reaction that rages in Macbeth after he hears the witch’s prophecies with curiosity; banquo is not taking it serious and is sarcastic; Macbeth is gullible How does Banquo’s reaction to the witches differ from Macbeth’s? What do you think Macbeth’s reaction suggests about his character?
He wonders if fate will action his own or if he has to perform some action to make this prediction come true. After Duncan announces that Malcom will be the next king Macbeth realizes that it is up to him to make the next prophecy come true; Macbeth would have killed Malcolm if he did not run away; he wants light not to see his dark desires One of the most interesting parts of any serious play is what goes on in the characters’ minds. What conflict rages in Macbeth after he hears the witches’ prophecy? What resolution to this conflict does Macbeth express in his aside in scene 4 lines 48-53?
The witches made Macbeth realize that all things are possible even becoming king, something that Macbeth had never before thought possible he becomes ambitious One critic has said that the witches are “in some sense representative of potentialities (things that we are capable of) within” Macbeth. How could that statement be explained? Is there any evidence in this act that Macbeth has wanted to be king before?
The mood is depressing, tragic. Images of blood include murder of Duncan, blood dagger, the blood on Macbeth and Lady Macbeth’s hands. Macbeth says Neptune’s ocean couldn’t wash away the blood. (Blood= death) ( Water= cleansing of guilt) What would you say is the mood of Act II? What images and actions help to create this mood? Why might images of blood and water appear in scene 2? What do they symbolize?
He is accustomed to murder but becoming more devious in his planning and arranging of the crime Why do you suppose Shakespeare did not have Macbeth kill Banquo with his own hands, as he killed Duncan and his two guards? What can you infer about Macbeth’s changing character after seeing how he engages in this complex plan involving professional murderers?
Lady Macbeth planned the first murderer, but Macbeth plans Banquo’s murder without consulting her. They were very close as they planned and carried out Duncan’s murder, and now she is not in his confidence. Perhaps their feeling of guilt and their growing distrust of others have eroded their trust in each other The relationship between Macbeth and Lady Macbeth has hanged in several ways since they became rulers of Scotland. Find details in this act that reveal some of these changes. What reasons can you suggest for these changes?
They want their sons to be king; Prophecy states that Banquo’s sons will be kings not Macbeth’s. So Lady Macbeth pushes at her husband to kill Banquo so Macbeth’s sons will be kings and not Banquo’s At the beginning of Scene 2, Lady Macbeth quietly tells herself, “Nought’s had, all’s spent, / Where our desire is got without content.” What does she mean? At this point, would her husband agree?
Those guilty of taking a life will be found out and will pay with their own lives. The line is relevant today in the debate over the death penalty and gang violence After his vision of Banquo’s ghost in Scene 4, Macbeth finally accepts that “blood will have blood.” What does this phrase mean? Is it relevant to today’s world?
The murderer sees Macduff as a traitor to Macbeth. Lady Macduff thinks Macduff is a traitor to his family and has abandoned them Both the murderer and Lady Macduff herself call Macduff a traitor. In what sense does each mean it? Do you think Macduff is a traitor in either sense?
Malcolm tests Macduff’s loyalty because he is prudent and suspicious, not naive as his father was In Scene 3, Malcolm and Macduff condemn the chaos that Macbeth’s rule has brought to Scotland, as if the disorder that Macbeth experiences in his own life has become Scotland’s. Does that happen today? Does the weakness or evil of political leaders become that of the nation itself? Explain your responses.
No, this murder puts Macbeth beyond redemption. It should be seen and acknowledged. Yes, it should be left to the audience’s imagination because imagination sometimes visualizes the act more shockingly The murder of Macduff’s small son is one of the most pitiful and shocking scenes in Shakespeare. Do you think it might have been better to have it reported after the fact rather than to have shown the carnage on stage? What would be lost and what would be gained by this change?
you must know your fatal flaw. Malcom knows his fatal flaw so that means that Malcom will be a good ruler according to Shakespeare. In Scene 3, Malcolm says that he will be an unfit ruler, despite the viciousness of Scotland’s current ruler, Macbeth. According to Shakespeare, what makes a good king? Do you think Malcolm’s self-awareness of his faults is a good or bad sign?
Just after killing Duncan, Macbeth says ” sleep no more, Macbeth has killed sleep” . Lady Macbeth does not sleep soundly because of her guilt Theatrically, the spectacle of Lady Macbeth walking in her sleep is one of the most striking scenes in the play. Why do you suppose Shakespeare has her walk in her sleep? How is this scene related to the remarks that Macbeth makes about sleep in Act II Scene 2, just after he kills Duncan.
The point at which Macbeth finds out that Macduff was not “born” of woman. The last act of Macbeth contains the play’s climax – the most emotional and suspenseful part of the action – the moment when the characters’ conflict is finally resolved. Which part of Act V do you consider the climax? Explain.
” Tomorrow, and tomorrow, and tomorrow” speech- He talks about life and how it is a short time before death. Shakespeare gave most of his tragic heroes an impressive dying speech in which they say something significant about their own life and death. Although he did not write such a speech for Macbeth, which speech of Macbeth’s from Act V do you think serves in the play as his dying speech? Why did you select this speech instead of others?
Macbeth’s Fatal Flaw Fatal flaw is ambition. While ambition can sometimes be a good thing, Macbeth’s ambition is so strong that he is willing to kill any person to get in his was of becoming king
Lady Macbeth’s Ambition and Hunger for Power Lady Macbeth is more ambitious than her husband and plots the murder of Duncan and won’t take “no” for an answer because of her thirst/hunger for power.
Supernatural Elements the 3 witches, when the witches gave prophecies to both Banquo and Macbeth, Macbeth’s hallucinations of the floating dagger, & also the appearance of the ghost of Banquo to Macbeth at the dinner.
Appearance Vs. Reality they lose sleep and Macbeth hallucinates(this is when he sees the dagger). Also, Lady MB thinks Duncan’s blood is on her hands
Fate Vs Free Will Macbeth may be fated to be king, but he decides on his own[free will] to murder Duncan to become king. This shows that fate may be predetermined, but free will determines how a people reach their destinies.

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