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Home > English > Macbeth > Themes

English

Themes

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One of the themes of the play is the struggle between good and evil.

Good and Evil

Remember that Macbeth himself is not a totally evil man. There is much about him that is good and he experiences ongoing struggles with his conscience.

Evil

Think about the evil in the play.

The supernatural -

The witches and their spells are linked with the devil.

The evil thoughts some characters have -

  • Lady Macbeth imagines the knocking out of her child's brains
  • Macbeth imagines the dagger, and tries to prepare himself for the evil deed of murder

The evil deeds -

  • The murder of Duncan
  • The murder of MacDuff's family

Good

Now think about the good elements in the play.

Heroism -

Duncan and his men represent right and order. They are trying to restore peace to Scotland.

Bravery -

Macbeth is described as being a brave man - "brave Macbeth, well he deserves that name" (Act 1, scene 2, line 16)

Symbols of good -

Malcolm and MacDuff are built up as figures of goodness and provide a contrast to the evil of Macbeth.

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Watch

A mock Shakespeare TV interview.

Class Clips

Video clip of a TV interview with Shakespeare, including a rock music video of Sonnet 18

Watch

Scene from Macbeth.

Class Clips

Macbeth - Act 1, Scenes 1 and 3

Watch

Scene from Macbeth.

Class Clips

Macbeth - Act 5, Scene 1

 

See more Macbeth clips at Class Clips - Macbeth

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