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    #1

    MacBeth

    Ok i think my teacher is marking me unfairly. We had to compare the poems 'laboratory' and 'Macbeth' and she only graded my work at a C which really frustrates me as I believe it should be higher, please read it and tell me what grade it should be:
    Compare the ways evil and villainy is presented in Macbeth and the poetry of Robert Browning
    The laboratory is written as a soliloquy meaning it’s in first person and it’s based upon their thoughts or thinking out loud. In the poem, there are many Gothic qualities displayed throughout such as evil plots, story of murder, madness and secrets.
    Browning portrays the poetic voice’s disturbed mental state through aural choices “which is the poison to poison her, prithee?” The alliteration of the letter ‘p’ shows that the voice is panting and getting sexually excited by the through of committing murder. “Trade in this devil’s smithy” meaning the devil’s work. Also, in the times at which this poem was written, God was extremely important by being involved with the devil’s work means that you are going against therefore it’s a severe act. This can be linked to Lady Macbeth because by killing the king she was going against God. Moreover in act 1 scene 5 Lady Macbeth calls upon the spirits to fill her with cruelty which can be linked with the devil once again. “These faint smokes curling whitely” Makes the act seem less cruel and shows she doesn’t need to watch the process but she wants to be involved.
    In Macbeth Lady Macbeth uses violent words such as ‘grind’, mash’ and ‘pound’ which are all violent words. “Not in haste” means she is not in a hurry.
    “Dance at the kings”
    To be able to dance at the Kings, you would need to have a good reputation. In those times, the smallest mistake could mean that your reputation would be ruined. This shows us that the character would risk her good reputation to get where she wants. This links to Lady Macbeth because she will do anything to get power, in this case killing the king.
    At the end of the play Macduff talks about “the usurper’s cursed head” and he calls Lady Macbeth a “ fiend-like queen” Reinforces and reminds us of the pure evil and what people can do to get power even if it leads to their deaths.
    “Sure to taste sweetly, is that poison too?” The voice is presented to be salivating, depicting her excitement. This exemplifies Browning’s use of gothic transgression as a female is planning to commit vengeful deeds which were unusual at the time. It also presents science and scientific advancements in a negative light as poison is used to commit murder.
    Similarly, Shakespeare creates choices to convey the working of Lady Macbeth’s diseased mind “you murdering ministers”. This shows she is getting aroused due to Duncan’s death.
    In both Macbeth and “The Laboratory” we have a very ambitious woman who is willing to resort to murder to accomplish her ends. Both women are not afraid to kill and try to achieve success through evil doings.
    “He is sure to remember her dying face!” shows she is enjoying her own doings. She is also very impatient and looks forward to seeing secondary effects of her actions.
    Lady Macbeth is described as “fiend-like queen” which means she can possess you just like she asked to be possessed when she summoned the demons “Come you spirits… And fill me from the crown to the toe top-full/of direst cruelty” Which is very shocking and villainous as in those days witches were burned alive.
    In laboratory the character says “What a wild crowd of invisible pleasures!” which shows how she is getting excited by the death as an exclamation mark is used, similarly Lady Macbeth gets excited over the outcome of the death which shows aggressive connection between both of the characters in laboratory and Macbeth.
    Jealousy is also shown in the poem laboratory as when the character says “And Pauline should have just thirty minutes to live! But to light a pastille, and Elise, with her head and her breast and her arms and her hands, should drop dead!” moreover shows that the character has very low self-esteem as she creates a list of the other women’s body features showing that she could be jealous of them. The character by making the poison also tries to show dominance and that women can be strong to and back in those days men were seen as more superior to women and there was no equality. One of the similarities between the both women in the play is that the character in laboratory and Lady Macbeth try to show superiority over men . The character in laboratory also wants to commit murder but Lady Macbeth doesn’t as she reached her goal therefore meaning she doesn’t have to do anything else.
    In laboratory the women shows hesitation and that she is impatient for the poison to be finished, we can see this from the quote “Quick -- is it finished? The colour’s too grim! Why not soft like the phial’s enticing and dim?” which also shows that she is worried that her plan will not work as the poison isn’t perfect. Similarly in Macbeth, Lady Macbeth’s plan fails as when she places the daggers Macbeth takes them away.
    In stanza 8 in laboratory, the character says “What a drop? She’s not little, no minion like me -- That’s why she ensnared him: this never will free” shows that there is too little poison to do the job and remind the chemist that a little drop won’t do anything which could also show jealousy of how strong or bulky the other women is.
    A sign of madness is also shows when the character in Macbeth says “ I brought my own eyes to bear on her so, that I thought could I keep them one half minute fixed, she would fall shrivelled” which shows that she tried killing the women by starting at her, which clearly shows that the character is mentally disturbed as she is shocked it didn’t work. This illness could show that maybe she doesn’t know what she’s doing when she’s creating the poison and that jealousy completely devoured her just like power devoured Lady Macbeth.
    There is also religious reference when the character says “Let death be felt and the proof remain; Brand, burn up, bite into its grace -- he is sure to remember her dying face!” as the word “grace” is the most important concept in the Bible. Moreover that sentence shows that she wants her to die slowly so that she can enjoy all of her pain. This can be linked to Lady Macbeth as in laboratory the character is most excited about actually committing murder rather than getting the outcome which Lady Macbeth prefers, she is more bothered about the prize.
    In 11th stanza the women in laboratory is also worried that the poison could ruin her life in some way as she says “Can it ever hurt me?” differently to Lady Macbeth as she too doesn’t care about how it will impact on her life.
    In the end of laboratory she says “ Now, take all my jewels, gorge gold to your fill, you may kiss me, old man, on my mouth if you will! But brush this dust off me, lest horror it brings Ere I know it” which is quite ironical as she is making the poison to kill the women who her husband had an affair with but then in the end decides to reciprocate what her husband did by kissing someone else . Lastly she is also worried about the poison attacking her.
    Overall many similarities and differences are shown between the poems “Macbeth” and “Laboratory” Some of the most common similarities is that in the end the things don’t go as planned, and they go against God by commit murder which is a mortal sin which you can’t come back from, moreover it has a massive impact on their life. One of the differences is that the women in laboratory wants to keep killing where as Lady Macbeth doesn’t.

  1. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: MacBeth

    Surely your teacher gave some comments and corrections as well as the grade. Was your teacher marking your comparison, your English, or both? Obviously, without us knowing the two poems, we can't comment on the actual comparison. I'm not suggesting that you post both poems here - that would take up too much space and would take us away from the purpose of the forum which is to help learners to improve their English (not their poetry comparison skills).
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  2. Charlie Bernstein's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: MacBeth

    Since your native language is English, why are you posting this here? Have you talked with your teacher about the grade? If you did, what did your teacher say?

    What grade it should be depends on your school level and (if you're in college) course of study.
    I'm not a teacher. I speak American English. I've tutored writing at the University of Southern Maine and have done a good deal of copy editing and writing, occasionally for publication.

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    #4

    Re: MacBeth

    I'm in year 11 and its the comparison between MacBeth and laboratory. what would you grade it?

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    #5

    Re: MacBeth

    Quote Originally Posted by Paddy1927 View Post
    I'm in year 11 and it's the a comparison between of Macbeth and Laboratory. What would you grade it?
    Note my corrections above. Please respond to our questions about your teacher's actual comments about why she graded it a C.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

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