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Appearance vs. Reality in Shakespeare's Macbeth

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Shelby Calvert

on 2 June 2014

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Transcript of Appearance vs. Reality in Shakespeare's Macbeth

Appearance vs. Reality
Shakespeare's Macbeth
A well known quote from this play is seen right in the first scene. The witches state:

"Fair is foul and foul is fair"
I, i, 11
Macbeth prepares his home for his guests to be a serene, peaceful palace.
However, he is planning to kill King Duncan.
The theme of appearance vs. reality is seen throughout Shakespeare's play, Macbeth.
“There's no art to find the mind's construction in the face”
I, iv, 13-14

This quote shows an example of where appearance vs. realty is cleary shown.
Lady Macbeth is the mastermind behind the killing of Duncan, she uses charm and flattery to convince Macbeth. She gets what she wants without doing the "dirty work" while appearing to be ladylike and innocent.
After Lady Macbeth and Macbeth kill Duncan they act as though they are the most surprised and shocked by his death. Appearing to be taken back by the event when they're the ones who killed him.
Lady Macbeth acts very strong and vaunt less however she isn’t a brave as she pretends to be: she said she’d kill the king herself but couldn’t because she said he looked too much like her father sleeping. She left the deed up to Macbeth to commit.
“this guest of summer, the temple-haunting martlet, does approve, by his love mansionry, that the heavens breath smells wooingly here; no jutty, frieze, buttress, nor coign of vantage, but this bird hath made his pendent bed and procreant cradle; where they most breed and haunt, I have observed, the air is delicate.”
I, vi, 4-11
“look like the time; bare welcome in your eye, your hand, your tongue; look like the innocent flower, but be the serpent under it.”
I, v, 71-73
“only look up clear; to alter favor ever is to fear”
I, v, 71-73

Banquo remarks to Duncan about the bird which usually breed s in temples and this shows them that the castle is welcoming and temple-like. However, the reality is that it is more of a horror place waiting for Duncan.
“O, yet I do repent me of my fury, that I did kill them.”
II, iii, 121-122

Macbeth even goes as far as pretending like he was so angry and shocked that he killed the guards; however he was just covering his tracks.
Back in Act I scene vii, Macbeth states that justice is fair and will prevail, however, once he commits the crime of killing Duncan, he does everything in his power not to be caught.

“we still have judgment here; that we but teach bloody instructions, which being taught return to plague the inventor; this even handed justice.”
I, vii, 8-10
“none of woman born / shall harm Macbeth”

"Macbeth shall never vanquish'd be until
Great Birnam wood to high Dunsinane hill
Shall come against him."
IV, i, 98-102
The Witches Prophecies
Appearance vs. Reality in the real world...
Many people believe that celebrities are happy because of the amount of money that they have and their fame...
In November 2010, Lovato ended her tour with the Jonas Brothers early to enter a three-month treatment program for physical and emotional issues, where she was diagnosed with bipolar disorder. She admits to having felt plagued by depression since childhood and says she suffered verbal bullying in middle school -- so much so that she chose to be homeschooled and received a high school diploma that way.

A common misconception that people make is when they think that just because someone who goes to church or claims to be a "holy person" they can do no wrong.
Appearance vs. Reality means that things are not always as they seem. The reality of something can change depending on one's perception...
A perfect example of appearance vs reality in the real world would be the way that models are photo shopped. to the viewer, we perceive them as perfect and flawless; that is not how they actually look however.
In conclusion, the theme appearance vs. reality is very prominent in Shakespeare's, Macbeth. It is also seen in real life and can be applied to many other things if you look close enough.
The End.
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