Ambition In Shakespeare And William Shakespeare's Macbeth

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The Scottish play written in 1606 is counted among one of Shakespeare’s Four Greatest Tragedies. Macbeth being set in a fatalistic society whilst Macbeth Re-told being set in a consumerist secular society quite obviously reflect different values and ideals however through the composers of each text we are able to gain greater insight to the universal themes that are highlighted in both texts.

Macbeth, the valiant, loyal and honorable warrior. Joe Macbeth, the “cooking brave heart”, head chef, and the “kitchen warrior”. Both characters ultimately become corrupted by their obsession of power and evidently become victims of the evil machinations of Lady and Ella Macbeth. Our protagonists are the tragic heroes whose loss of humanity eventually
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The witches in Macbeth merely act as the agents of self - determinism whom used their knowledge to plant a seed of ambition in Macbeth. Ambition is portrayed as a flaw in the play, as it causes Macbeth’s eventual downfall. There are three catalysts that fuelled Macbeth’s deadly ambition: the witches’ prophecies, Duncan announcing Malcolm as Prince of Cumberland and Lady Macbeth. It becomes evident that the witches targeted a weak-willed man with half truths to fuel his hidden ambition. Due to his strong desires to gain kingship, his morals let loose and eventually he strays onto the path of evil and corruption where he murders Duncan, Banquo and Macduff’s family. Macbeth recognizes that his own ambition would subsequently be the cause of his self destruction as he comments in Act 1 Scene 7, “I have no spur/ To prick the sides of my intent, but only / Valuting ambition, which o’erleaps itself / And falls on the other.” Similarly, in Macbeth Retold, Joe’s eventual downfall was also the causation of his malignant ambition. However, it becomes evident that Lady Macbeth was the leading force that fuelled Joe’s malignant ambition. Through the scene in which we see Ella whispering in Joe’s ears “You’re too full of the milk of human kindness Joe. Thank you Duncan for the slap on the back, I am so very very grateful”. The recurring piano motif reinforces the idea of a conspiratorial atmosphere. Through the close up of Ella and Joe we are able to see their emotions very distinctly; we see Joe extremely unsettled as he breathes heavily in and out and deeply frowns. Joe is unsettled because he wants to ignore the other half of him that is jealous of Duncan; he does not want to in a sense ‘wake up his deadly ambition’. However, as if becomes clearer later in the film, Joe’s ambition was already

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