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Mrs. Primack's English Class

ACT 2
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ACT II- Discussion Questions and Activities

 

  1. Why does Macbeth decide to launch his bloody career by murdering Duncan? Why is he not sufficiently happy with the high social position he occupies and the honored status he has acquired among his peers?

 

  1. What are Macbeth’s inner conflicts about murdering Duncan? What finally convinces him to go through with the murder?

 

 

  1. What is Banquo’s reaction to the witches’ predictions?

 

  1. Why is Macbeth, whom we know to be brave and ruthless in battle, so afraid? How does Shakespeare dramatize Macbeth's fear? Why is it that Macbeth, whom we are told is fierce and bloody and ruthless in battle, becomes completely unhinged by the murder of Duncan?

 

  1. What is the relationship between Macbeth and Lady Macbeth? Is Lady Macbeth to blame for Macbeth’s actions?

 

  1. Why does Macbeth say he has murdered the guards?

 

  1. Why do Donalbain and Malcolm leave? Where do they say they are going? Do you agree with them?

 

  1. Compare/contrast Macbeth and Lady Macbeth’s reactions to the blood.  What do their reactions suggest about their character?  What does the blood symbolize? Cite examples from the play.

 

 

The Language of Shakespeare

 

Figurative Language- Shakespeare's mastery of language is exemplified through his use of imagery such as similes, metaphors, personification, alliteration, and symbols.

 

Shakespeare paints vivid word pictures. Find examples of the following and illustrate them with drawings or collages.

 

  1. Flower imagery
  2. Disguise
  3. Planting imagery
  4. Clothing imagery

 

 

Theme- Shakespeare's use of imagery helps to develop many themes. Identify an example of each of the following and explain how it contributes to a specific theme.

 

  1. superstitions
  2. darkness
  3. water/cleansing
  4. blood
  5. weather
  6. sleep/death.

 

 

Sound- Except for a few scenes, Macbeth is written in blank verse, which resembles more than any other verse form the natural rhythm of spoken English.

 

Find an example of the following:

 

  1. a line from iambic pentameter
  2. how Shakespeare varies the verse to express meaning.
  3. a rhymed couplet-which was used to indicate the end of a scene to an audience in a theater without curtains.

 

WRITE NOW:

 

Consider Shakespeare's diction, which is so masterfully displayed in Macbeth. Choose 2 passages that best exemplify Shakespeare's use of sound, rhythm, and meaning and discuss how the passage reveals the character's feelings.