Using the resources provided for you at the Macbeth Webquest site, research the following questions and information to form an understanding of the life, times, and historical context of the play. Start by browsing the resources on the Webquest site so you know what materials are where. THEN start looking for answers to the questions.
You will also address several of the key themes that the play covers. You should have AT LEAST ONE COMPLETE SENTENCE in each box – some of them ask for more information, so be sure to give it!!!
Shakespeare and Elizabethan Theater – before beginning the play, it is important to know a little about the life and times of the author and what theatre was during this age.
|What do we know about Shakespeare as a man? What are some important biographical details that we need to be aware of?|
|What was life like in his time? What was the society he lived in?|
|What did Shakespeare use as his inspiration for writing this play?|
|What did theatre look and work like in Shakespeare’s time?|
|What do we know about acting, costumes and audiences in Shakespeare’s time?|
Historical Context of the Play – where did Shakespeare’s ideas come from? Many of his plays had some basis in actual history…
|Was there a “real” person named Macbeth? Explain who this person was.|
|What was Shakespeare’s historical source for “Macbeth”?|
|Who was the king during the time Macbeth was written?|
King James and His Influence – just as important as understanding Shakespeare was understanding the man he wrote for. Who was ‘in charge’ of things during this time…
|How did James become king? What was he like as a king?|
|What was the political climate in England at the time?|
|What subject did King James take a special interest in?|
|How was James connected to “Macbeth”?|
Witchcraft, the Supernatural, and Curses! – many of Shakespeare’s Comedies including elements of the Supernatural, but Macbeth is one of the few Tragedies to include these elements. Why was this significant? What did it do for the plot? What did it mean for that time period?
|Give 2 examples of “unlawful charms” that are mentioned in Witchcraft and King James article.|
|Why do people believe that the play Macbeth is cursed?|
|Why did the people of Scotland curse the play?|
|Provide one example of how the play was cursed. What terrible things happened during the play?|
So What??? – why do we read all this old crap? What makes a 400-yr-old play like this still important and relevant?
|Discuss one reason why this play is still relevant in today’s world?|
|What is one Major Theme that the play addresses and HOW?|
|How is that Theme still present in today’s society? How does it affect people like you?|
|Choose ONE of the most famous lines from the play explain IN YOUR OWN WORDS what it means and how it affects or applies to you personally.|