Macbeth Essay

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[Booth discusses the dramatic technique Shakespeare used to portray Macbeth as a sympathetic tragic hero. The critic argues that the testimony of the other characters as well as Macbeth's own moral vacillations early in the play suggest that the protagonist "is not a naturally evil man but a man who has every potentiality for goodness." Booth also points out the effect that Macbeth's limited role in the onstage murders has on his sensitive portrayal. Duncan's death. the critic observes, is neither explicitly shown nor described, and the murders of Banquo and Macduffs family are committed by accomplices. Thus the hero is never seen as an active participant in any act of violence. In addition, Booth contends, the protagonist's eloquent poetic language seemingly contradicts the evil of his actions and, instead, helps establish him as a sympathetic tragic figure. The critic concludes that the spectator "can feel great pity...

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This section contains 5,015 words
(approx. 13 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Macbeth Study Guide
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Shakespeare for Students
Macbeth from Shakespeare for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.