01.10 Macbeth: The Power of Words Worksheet

Step 1: Character Interpretation

Earlier in this lesson you read two different interpretations of a scene featuring Lady Macbeth. You were asked to view a stage performance of the same scene in order to answer this question: How does this interpretation compare to the others? In a response of at least five sentences, comment on the stage interpretation and explain your impression of Lady Macbeth in this scene. Use specific examples from the clip to support your answer. Things to consider: her facial expressions, body language, and tone of voice. (Her body language is very dramatic) (her voice was very firm)

Interpretation 1:

Lady Macbeth is a supportive and helpful wife.
Tone: Affectionate and excited

Your face, my thane(She says my thane sweetly, like “my dear.”), is as a book where men

May read strange matters: — to beguile the time,
Look like the time; bear welcome in your eye,
Your hand, your tongue (She is offering him heartfelt advice to ensure his success): look like the innocent (This word also gives her tone a sweet quality.) flower,
But be the serpent under’t. He that’s coming
Must be provided for: and you shall put
This night’s great business into my dispatch (She offers to take care of everything for him so he doesn’t need to worry about anything);
Which shall to all our nights and days to come
Give solely sovereign sway and masterdom (She is excited about the possibilities of the future).

Interpretation 2:

Lady Macbeth is a cold-hearted manipulator.
Tone: Derisive(expressing ridicule, mocking) and greedy

Your face, my thane(She says my thane in a condescending way to belittle him), is as a book where men
May read strange matters: — to beguile the time,
Look like the time; bear welcome in your eye,
Your hand, your tongue(She is bossy, telling him what to do and how to do it) look like the innocent flower,
But be the serpent under’t.(the innocent flower is weak, emphasis is placed on the serpent) He that’s coming
Must be provided for: and you shall put
This night’s great business into my dispatch(She means this as, “I don’t think you can handle this so I’ll do it myself”);
Which shall to all our nights and days to come
Give solely sovereign sway and masterdom(The word “masterdom” suggests a desire for the power that will be theirs.)

Step 2: Setting Interpretation

Choose one of the provided scenes (I chose ACT I, Scene V) from Macbeth that you have previously studied in this course and locate or create an image that shows a fitting setting for that scene. In a response of at least five sentences, explain why you chose the image. Use examples from the play and the image to support your reasoning. Include the scene and the image along with your response.