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One of Shakespeare's greatest, but also bloodiest tragedies, was written around 1605/06. Many have seen the story of Macbeth's murder and usurpation of the legitimate Scottish King Duncan as having obvious connection to contemporary issues regarding King James I (James VI of Scotland), and the Gunpowder Plot of 1605. King James was particularly fascinated with witchcraft, so the appearance of the witches chanting "Fair is foul, and foul is fair" at the opening of the play seemed particularly topical, as was Macbeth's betrayal of Banquo, from whom James claimed direct descent.
However, the play is clearly far more than a piece of royal entertainment. It is also a fast-moving and dramatically satisfying piece of theatre. Macbeth's existential struggle between loyalty to his King and his "Vaulting ambition" is fascinating to watch, as his is struggle with Lady Macbeth, and her own terrifying refusal of her maternal role. The play shows an intensification of Shakespeare's interest in mothers and their effect upon ruling masculinity, and also contains some of the most memorable speeches in the entire canon, including Macbeth's reflections that ultimately life "is a tale / Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, / Signifying nothing". --Jerry Brotton --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Grade 7 Up–Each book includes a brief introduction to the play, followed by an illustrated cast of characters and a glossary of literary terms. Annotated text from the play alternates with black-and-white illustrations of selected scenes, in the style of a graphic novel. It is unclear why the editors did not make these true graphic novels throughout. The black-and-white comic art is undistinguished, and as most of it simply depicts two characters in conversation, it does little to clarify what is going on. The first two plays in particular offer marvelous possibilities for the illustrator, so the ho-hum comics are disappointing. Think about it boxes contain study questions such as, What has worried Macbeth? and boxed Literary terms give examples like, âHermia...Hermia...Helena...' is...alliteration. Teacher's guides accompany the books. Those interested in a graphic-novel interpretation might want to consider Arthur Byron Cover's Macbeth (Puffin, 2005), which is illustrated in manga style and would probably appeal more to reluctant readers. These titles might be useful for teaching Shakespeare to reluctant readers, but a better choice might be a simple annotated Shakespeare such as a Sparknotes No Fear Shakespeare series (Spark), supplemented by Bruce Coville's William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet (1999) and William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night (2003, both Penguin), which are picture-book prose adaptations, or Adam McKeown's Romeo and Juliet: Young Reader's Shakespeare (Sterling, 2004).–Kathleen E. Gruver, Burlington County Library, Westampton, NJ
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I have read "The Scottish Play," a few times, but wanted a Kindle version. This was a great choice. Included with the play, are papers explaining different aspects, vocabulary and... Read morePublished 16 months ago by Chere Schwindt
This is second series Arden and notes are not as complete or interesting as I expect to find when third series Macbeth is published.Published 23 months ago by John
This is one of Shakespeare's plays I have liked best so far (I still have several ones left to read), along with Hamlet, King Lear and Julius Caesar. Read morePublished on Sept. 4 2003 by Guillermo Maynez
Oxford's Macbeth was hard to read although foot notes were supplied. The language don't make sense and therefore is hard to make any sense of the story. Read morePublished on Sept. 19 2002
This play is my favorite of all the Shakespeare plays I have read, which is only 5 or so, but still, I love it. Read morePublished on June 6 2001
These comments are primarily about the New Penguin Shakespeare's 'Macbeth', rather than the play proper. Read morePublished on Feb. 16 2001 by James R. Mccall
a tragic story of death and betrail. A great play to watch, read, and perform. Read this play!Published on Aug. 7 2000
I read Macbeth a little while ago, and realized that it mirrored modern-day life a little too well. We have all known a Macbeth, who backstabs Banquo at the height of his power, or... Read morePublished on March 10 2000 by Mike Kushnir