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In Act III, scene 2 of "Macbeth," is Lady Macbeth enjoying her new position?

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mano789 | Student, Grade 11 | eNotes Newbie

Posted May 14, 2008 at 11:25 AM via web

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In Act III, scene 2 of "Macbeth," is Lady Macbeth enjoying her new position?

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jilllessa | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Associate Educator

Posted May 14, 2008 at 12:35 PM (Answer #1)

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I do not think that Lady Macbeth is truly enjoying her new position because she is beginning to realize her guilt in the killing of Duncan and she is afraid that her guilt will be exposed.  She laments as she goes to discuss her discontent with Macbeth: 

Nought's had, all's spent/ Where our desire is got without content:/ 'Tis safer to be that which we destroy/ Than by destruction dwell in doubtful joy.

This statement shows her incipient regret at what she and her husband have done as she realizes that she can attain no true joy from a position that was not rightfully hers and which was gained by such a foul deed.  For Lady Macbeth, the situation will only become worse.

 

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gbeatty | College Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted May 14, 2008 at 12:38 PM (Answer #2)

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No, not really.Consider these lines: "Naught's had, all's spent,
Where our desire is got without content:
'Tis safer to be that which we destroy,
Than, by destruction, dwell in doubtful joy"Here she's saying, we got everything we wanted, but we're not happy.  They don't have a chance to enjoy everything they've gotten—it's all crumbling away. Despite that, though, she's holding on to her chosen path, nudging Macbeth to put on a happy face and charm the guests so that they can hold on to the position they've won by their brutal methods.

 

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