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What do you think Macbeth should do to gain control of his feelings?What are things he...

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always | eNotes Newbie

Posted October 15, 2009 at 1:10 AM via web

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What do you think Macbeth should do to gain control of his feelings?

What are things he can do to get control of hiself?

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lcassidy | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Assistant Educator

Posted October 15, 2009 at 1:35 AM (Answer #1)

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This is a question which calls for a personal opinion.  Here's mine:  from the beginning of the play, Macbeth is governed by his emotions.  In order to gain control of his feelings, Macbeth must follow logic.  He knows the difference between right and wrong, but he has given in to his ambition and greed.  He even states that "the instruments of darkness tell us truth" at the beginning of the play.  Meaning that he knows that what he is doing is wrong, and he does it anyway.  Macbeth must follow his better judgement and start listening to Banquo and his own conscience in order to gain control of his feelings.

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

Posted October 15, 2009 at 2:26 AM (Answer #2)

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This, in Act 1, scene 7, is Macbeth's last chance to to think clearly. After it, he gives himself over the powers of emotions, pride, fear, anger and power. After it, his destiny is sealed. Macbeth has left the feast he has prepared for Duncan. Lady Macbeth has planned Duncan's murder, and Macbeth is now, sensibly thinking it over:

If it were done when 'tis done, then 'twere well
It were done quickly: if the assassination
Could trammel up the consequence, and catch
With his surcease success; that but this blow
Might be the be-all and the end-all here,
But here, upon this bank and shoal of time,
We'ld jump the life to come. But in these cases
We still have judgment here; that we but teach
Bloody instructions, which, being taught, return
To plague the inventor: this even-handed justice
Commends the ingredients of our poison'd chalice
To our own lips. He's here in double trust;
First, as I am his kinsman and his subject,
Strong both against the deed; then, as his host,
Who should against his murderer shut the door,
Not bear the knife myself. Besides, this Duncan
Hath borne his faculties so meek, hath been
So clear in his great office, that his virtues
Will plead like angels, trumpet-tongued, against
The deep damnation of his taking-off;
And pity, like a naked new-born babe,
Striding the blast, or heaven's cherubim, horsed
Upon the sightless couriers of the air,
Shall blow the horrid deed in every eye,
That tears shall drown the wind. I have no spur
To prick the sides of my intent, but only
Vaulting ambition, which o'erleaps itself
And falls on the other.

Then Lady Macbeth interrupts him. He tells her:

We will proceed no further in this business:
He hath honour'd me of late; and I have bought
Golden opinions from all sorts of people,
Which would be worn now in their newest gloss,
Not cast aside so soon.

She then convinces him harshly that he promised her he would do the killing, that he wouldn't be a man if he didn't do it, that he doesn't really love her, etc. He folds, and there is no turning back for Macbeth or his Lady.

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