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Discuss imagery in Macbeth

Uploaded by Ed_Buzu on Jan 10, 2007

Shakespeare uses many forms of imagery in his plays. In the play Macbeth Shakespeare applies the imagery of clothing, and darkness. Each detail in his imagery contains an important symbol of the play. These symbols need to be understood in order to understand the entire play.

Within the play Macbeth the imagery of clothing portrays that Macbeth is seeking to hide his "disgraceful self" from his eyes and others. Shakespeare wants to show the contrast between the pathetic individual that Macbeth really is and the disguises he uses to hide the fact. Macbeth is constantly represented symbolically as one who doesn’t wear his own clothes. He is wearing an undeserved dignity, which is clearly shown by the use of clothing imagery. The description of the purpose of clothing in Macbeth is the fact that these garments are not his. Therefore, Macbeth is uncomfortable in them because he is frequently conscious of the fact that they do not belong to him. In the following passage, the idea constantly reappears, Macbeth's new honours do not fit him well, like loose and badly fitting garments, belonging to someone else:

New honours come upon him

Like strange garments,

Cleave not to their mould

But with the aid of use (I, iii, 144-145)

This passage is clearly stating that Macbeth cannot fit in these garments. They are not meant to and the clothing imagery is therefore effective.

The second form of imagery used in the play is the imagery of darkness. Macbeth, a Shakespearean tragedy contains and demonstrates the darkness in a tragedy. In the play, the design of the witches, the guilt in Macbeth's soul and the darkness of the night set up the atmosphere. All of the significant scenes take place at night or in some dark spot, for instance; the vision of the dagger, the murder of Duncan, the murder of Banquo and Lady Macbeth's sleep walking. Darkness symbolizes many things such as evil and death in the play....

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Uploaded by:   Ed_Buzu

Date:   01/10/2007

Category:   Macbeth

Length:   2 pages (499 words)

Views:   3005

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