Macbeth | Criticism

This literature criticism consists of approximately 22 pages of analysis & critique of Macbeth.
This section contains 5,505 words
(approx. 19 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Garry Wills

SOURCE: Wills, Garry. “Lady Macbeth.” In Witches and Jesuits: Shakespeare's Macbeth, pp. 75-89. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1995.

In the following excerpt, Wills considers Lady Macbeth as the “fourth witch” in Macbeth and emphasizes the distinctive qualities of this image in theatrical performances of the play.

Though Lady Macbeth's is not a huge part—she speaks only a third of the lines that Cleopatra does, and under half of Portia's in The Merchant of Venice—two towering (but very different) theatrical reputations were built largely on performances as Lady Macbeth: Sarah Siddons's in the eighteenth century and Ellen Terry's in the nineteenth.1 Siddons was the lofty terrorizer of her husband, and Terry the pre-Raphaelite spectre who dooms him with her beauty. No actor of modern times—since, that is, the inception of the “curse” on the play—has won such general recognition for excelling in this part, though presumably...

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This section contains 5,505 words
(approx. 19 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Garry Wills
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Critical Essay by Garry Wills from Gale. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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