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Home :: Archive :: 1994 :: March ::
Re: Macbeth's Death
Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 5, No. 0276.  Monday, 28 March 1994.
 
(1)     From:   Timothy Bowden <
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        Date:   Sunday, 27 Mar 1994 07:04:15 PST
        Subj:   Re: SHK 5.0268  Re: Macbeth's Death
 
(2)     From:   Charles Edelman <
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        Date:   Monday, 28 Mar 94 16:57:00 EST
        Subj:   Macbeth's Death
 
(3)     From:   Phyllis Rackin <
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        Date:   Monday, 28 Mar 1994 09:34:20 -0500 (EST)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 5.0271  Re: Macbeth's Death
 
 
(1)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Timothy Bowden <
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Date:           Sunday, 27 Mar 1994 07:04:15 PST
Subject: 5.0268  Re: Macbeth's Death
Comment:        Re: SHK 5.0268  Re: Macbeth's Death
 
> I guess my objection as an audience member of your production would be
> that the only thing that *saves* Macbeth for me at the end of the play
> is that he stays the course, he doesn't cave in, that he goes out "as
> a man," if you will. When I taught Macbeth to inner city minority
> students, that was something they were very pleased to see in the
> play--yes, Macbeth did horrible things, yes, he had a terrible fall,
> but when they brainstormed all the things he *could* have done at the
> end (tried to cut a deal, sneaked away in disguise, committed suicide,
> surrendered outright), they saw guts--macho, to some of them--in his
> ending, a return to the noble figure we glimpsed if only too briefly
> at the beginning of the play. Elise Earthman <
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I'll bet they all bought into the juvenille macho depravity of Othello,
as well.  I'm wondering if persisting in unspeakable acts in the name of
`manhood' to reach those impressed by such show is a fit objective here.
What's the street application?  A drug dealer trapped in a crack house
with an automatic weapon?
 
"Lookit me, maw, I'm Macbeth!"  (- after Jimmy Cagney in _White Heat_.)
 
(2)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Charles Edelman <
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Date:           Monday, 28 Mar 94 16:57:00 EST
Subject:        Macbeth's Death
 
To remove "hold enough" from the words previous to them breaks up a
couplet, which seems to me odd.  "Damned be he that cries," left alone by
itself, seems appropriate for a schoolyard fight, which is over when someone
starts crying.
 
My reading of Macbeth's final moments is that he is once again "brave
Macbeth--well he deserves that name"  and that he knows he is going to die,
but is determined to do so bravely.  I do not see any speeches in the Folio
text which would appear consistent with his begging for a halt.  This, of
course, proves nothing, and the suggested staging COULD be both fitting and
interesting.
 
If self-advertisement is permitted, Timothy might find the discussion of the
Macbeth combat in my book, 'Brawl Ridiculous: Swordfighting in Shakespeare's
Plays,' Manchester U.P. 1992, of interest.
 
Best wishes,
Charles Edelman
Edith Cowan University, Australia

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(3)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Phyllis Rackin <
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Date:           Monday, 28 Mar 1994 09:34:20 -0500 (EST)
Subject: 5.0271  Re: Macbeth's Death
Comment:        Re: SHK 5.0271  Re: Macbeth's Death
 
Meanwhile, is it so
 
> hard to imagine Macduff, on his dutiful way to see Malcolm crowned at
> Scone, encountering three strange women who wish to have a word with him?
>                                        --Ron Macdonwald
 
No, it isn't.  But given the fact that it isn't, why do you suppose the
text we have doesn't?
 

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