Macbeth as a strong male

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  • How does Shakespeare present Macbeth as a strong male?
    • The first half of the play
      • Macbeth is presented as an admirable and heroic male at war
      • In the first two acts, the title character, Macbeth, is not present
        • In Act one Scene one, Macbeth is seen by the audience in a negative light through the use of pathetic fallacy 'thunder... lightning... fog... filthy air'
      • Macbeth can also be interpreted as a coward (a trait of a weak male) as he was too weak to go back to the place of murder to return the daggers, so his wife, a female, had to do it for him. ' I am afraid to think of what i have done. Look on't again i dare not'
        • Macbeth is also too weak to murder Banquo and Banquo's son himself and results in hiring murderers to do it for him.
    • The second half of the play
      • Macbeth is physically weak as he is murdered by Macduff. This is completely different from how he was physically strong in the war at the beginning of the play.
        • However, Macbeth is mentally Strong as he continues to fight for his kingship until the end, thus being courageous.
      • A male figure is supposed to protect their family, and just like Macduff, Macbeth fails to protect his wife as Lady Macduff commits suicide at the end of the play
      • Macbeth is egotistical when he finds out that he cannot be murdered by a man born from a woman. It is only until Macduff announces that he has been born for c-section that he knows that he is about to get murdered
    • What is a 'strong male'?
      • Power
      • Physically strong. Macbeth is strong on the outside due to his power, but cowardly on the inside and morally ruined
      • Title. 'Thane of Fife' 'Thane of Cawdor' 'King/Queen'
      • Mentally strong. Macbeth begins to become mentally weak as he starts to have hallucinations of Banquo's ghost and the dagger
      • Morally strong. Throughout the entire play, Macbeth has morally wrong, murderous thoughts towards Duncan, Banquo, Macduff' wife and Macduff's children


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