Analyse and Compare Shakespeare's 'Lady Macbeth' and Steinbeck's 'Curley's Wife'

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Celton Brito-Lobato Analyse and compare how Lady Macbeth and Curley's wife are presented Shakespeare’s ' Macbeth' and Steinbeck’s ‘Of Mice and Men’ In the Shakespearean play of ‘Macbeth’ we are introduced to the character of Lady Macbeth. Similarly in John Steinbeck's novella Of Mice of Men we also presented with an equally diverse character of Curley's wife. ‘Macbeth’ was written during the early 17th century, and was a play 'fit for a king'. It outlines a couple's ambition to become rulers of Scotland and sees them fulfil this ambition and in doing so, killing the king in the process. Despite being written during patriarchal Jacobean society, the protagonist is a female, which is was highly unusual in those days. Of course this protagonist is Lady Macbeth. Throughout the play, through Lady Macbeth's actions we are forced to believe that she is evil. In contrast, the novel John Steinbeck tells a story of dreams, hopes and loneliness. We are introduced to a majorly significant and complex character, named Curley’s wife. Steinbeck shows us that Curley’s wife is flirtatious, mischievous (despite the patriarchal society of the 1930’s) but most of all she is an isolated character. Her hasty marriage to Curley proves to be failed attempt to escape her own spiral of disappointment of not fulfilling her ambition of becoming an actor. This ironically is a main theme in both texts. This essay will analyse and compare the presentation of Lady Macbeth and Curley's wife through the structure, themes, what is said about them, their actions and what they themselves say. Presentation of character can be explored by observing what Lady Macbeth says. Lady Macbeth is illustrated as a cruel character because she requests the evil spirits to “unsex” her. The use of the word “unsex” shows that Lady Macbeth does not possess the masculine qualities required to perform such an evil
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