Which version of Macbeth do you prefer?

Monday, July 23, 2007

Macduff and duty

Hi year 11. Today, (Act 4 sc 3) we saw Macduff break down at the terrible news of his family's fate. Should Macduff have left his "wife, children, servants, all" , his "pretty ones" as he calls them, unprotected and fled to "young Malcolm's" side?

20 comments:

Josh C said...

Macduff had two choices in this matter, take his family, servants and animals to "young Malcom's" side or leave them behind. As we see in the play, Macduff leaves his family behind unknowingly of the consequences. What if Macduff had taken his family, servants and animals with him? Well I would think that he would've got ambushed by Macbeth's murderers because Macduff would've been traveling with a vast number of people and it would've been eye catching to Macbeth. But, if Macduff did travel with his companions and they did get caught, he could've had a chance against Macbeth with all the people who were with him. Yes it could've been risky but I think that he should've taken his "castle" with him. I think a part of Macduff knew that there would be a chance that his "wife, children, servants, all" and his "pretty ones" would be slaughtered by evil Macbeth but Macduff probably wanted to sneak out quietly so he left them all behind.

Caner Secgin said...

Hey Mz..
we see Macduff brake down in that scene but i think that by sacraficing his own family(and others in his castle) he saved a country.By Macduff running of to "Young Malcolm" he got an army to come back and kill the murderous Macbeth.I belive it was the right choice to go to "young malcolm" becuase the king was a very important part of the lives of people back in them days,so by sacrificing his family he saved the country from really terrible hard times...

Younan said...

Macduff faced a hard decision to make when he had left his "pretty chickens" behind to be slaughtered by Macbeth. Macduff knew that not turning up to Macbeth's "banquet" he would have dealt with death. So he would have had no choice but to run to join Malcolm and his army. Macduff should've considered taking his castle along with him but there would be the chance that he may have been spotted by Macbeth's people. Macduff may have blown the army's cover and cost them their preparation to defeat Macbeth. Also the fact that taking a whole castle of people would take time and Macduff may not of had that time to move. He would've needed that time to hurry over and join Malcolm. Macduff should've at least brought his wife and son or any loved ones because he did know that Macbeth would come after him for not attending the feast. Macduff should not have left his family in the hands of Macbeth.

Anthony

nicole said...

I think it would have been a hard decision for Macduff to leave his family but as for whether or not it was the right decision i am still unsure.
He would probably have thought that in leaving his family to go to "young Malcolm" he was helping his "pretty ones" and preparing to fight for a better life for them, but in leaving he left them unprotected from Macbeth and he could not have expected Macbeth to just leave them be while he was gone as Macbeth would more than likely kill them to punish him for leaving.

Nic

Lillian Leptos said...

Hi Josh you put the neglect of Macduff's family down to his ignorance of what evil macbeth was capable of. You say he was ignorant of the consequences but in a4 sc 3 L he admits that Macbeth is a tyrant and blloody murderer. He says "Bleed, bleed poor country" that has Macbeth as its king. He says a few lines later, that under Macbeth, the country is enslaved ("sinks beneath the yolk") and awash in blood ("it weeps, it bleeds and each new day a gash is added to her wounds").I would say he is very much aware of what may happen to the family of a person who shows disloyalty by running from his king. I think you agree with this when you say " I think a part of Macduff knew" that his family would be slaughtered by evil Macbeth. Do you think he made the right choice when he left? If his life was in danger if he stayed, did he do the right thing to join Macbeth's enemies and take up arms against the man who threatened all that Macduff loved and believed in?

Lillian Leptos said...

Hi Caner
You say that Macduff sacraficed his own family in order that he could save his country. I agree that he did more good by joining malcolm than by staying and defending his own interests. If Macbeth could kill banquo, he could kill Macduff. Much as he loved his family, i think you are right in suggesting that his position as thane would have led him to believe that he would gladly give up his life (and that of his family) for the sake of a greater good. bearing in mind that he was a man that put duty before family, do you believe him when in A4 s3 he makes such a show of his grief?

Lillian Leptos said...

Hello Mr Younan
You say that Macduff faced a hard decision and finally chose duty over love. I agree that it would have been hard, with so many spies that Macbeth keeps paid (in all the thanes castles) to slip away unnoticed, and that if he had tried to take his wife and children, they would have been reported on. There was no way that Macduff could have come through this without losing a great deal. it is interesting that this great loss, rather than destroying him , actually fires him up to take bloody revenge against the Scottish "fiend".I've just had a thought. do you think that Macduff was another ambitious man? Could he have gone off to join malcolm, in the hope that if they won, he might merit some great office? 9after all isn't that what happened to Macbeth after the big battle against the treasonous Macdonald?

Lillian Leptos said...

Hi Nic
you said you think it would have been a hard decision for Macduff to leave his family but as for whether or not it was the right decision i am still unsure.
He would probably have thought that in leaving his family to go to "young Malcolm" he was helping his "pretty ones" . a Scotland ruled by a rightful successor to the throne would have been a more peaceful place. Putting hs sword to duty in Malcolm's cause would have seemed like the only thing he could do. Do you think Macduff was blind to Macbeth's ambitions? do you think he was convinced by the show of loyalty that Macbeth had presented for so long?

Caner Secgin said...

in a way i do but in another i dont..
i do becuase when he heard his "pritty ones" had bein murdered he was shocked that Macbeth a murderous man would acuttally kill his family..and also no matter what cercimstance you alwaizz show some sort of emotion to hearing things like that...but i didnt belive it on the other had becuase he would of stayed or in some way took them along or hid his family somewhere...
it wasnt necessary..

Anonymous said...

I am Jacob, my accounts doing something funny. I'll figure it out later...

Macduff had several different choices when it came to what he could have done. He made the choice that turned out to be a good choice in the end, but it sacrificed his family in the process, which wasn’t so good. Macduff could have showed up and warned them to flee, or even just sent a messenger to inform his “pretty chickens” of his suspicions of Macbeth’s intentions. And should have Macduff left with his soldiers, (he would have been in a pretty terrible position in being a thane and not having soldiers to defend his castle from, well, anything!), A much better thought would have been to leave so many at the castle to adequately defend it against threatening forces. So yes, Macduff did make the right decision in fleeing to “young Malcom’s” side, but he did not go about the best way of doing it, nowhere near it, in fact.

Note: hey Ms, do you know to work these 'HTML' tags? (noted under the "leave your comment" box)

-{Curiosity killed the Cat}-

Giuseppe said...

I think that Macduff should have taken all his "pretty ones" with him. He knew that by betraying Macbeth he would have faced death. So he should have takin his family, friends and servants with him. It was an act brought on by selfishness and fear. Macduff was selfish by only thinking of himself by fleeing to Malcolm and his army. It was also an act brought on by fear because Macduff knew sooner or later he would face Macbeths sword if Macbeth found out he was leaving the castle to join the enemies.

Younan said...

do you think that Macduff was another ambitious man? Could he have gone off to join malcolm, in the hope that if they won, he might merit some great office?

I believe that Macduff wouldn't have gone to such extents to become anything higher than his present role. This is mainly because he is already married and has a child. Macduff wouldn't risk his whole life when he has a son to look after. His son would be very important to him because he would have to pass on his fathers name and the family reputation. Macduff wouldn't put himself before his family in order to gain more power. Even though we did see this happen, but it was for the good. (im refering to when Macduff ran off)

Anthony

Lillian Leptos said...

Hi killer (jacob), i agree that Macbeth was in a pretty terrible situation. In one way his great loss was a positive thing. It feulled his rage. He is worried that if someone other than him kills macbeth then he will be forever haunted by the ghosts of his beloved family. Do you think there was any hint of ambition in Macduff's scuttling off to fight at Malcolm's side? is there any hint that he hoped this might lead to more honours being heaped on him by a grateful future king?
(anout the html...ignorance is bliss...sorry, ca't help)

Lillian Leptos said...

Hi Giuseppe. you give a pretty harsh judgement on Macduff. I must say that I was suprised that he could have left them so unprotected. Polanski makes us think that it was a very competitive group of thanes. His suggestion that Donalbain took the same evil path as macbeth and before him, the traitor macdonald, leaves us with the impression that we all have the potential for great evil and betrayal in us. do you think this is so. could you see yourself betraying your nearest and dearest to get your hands on the ultimate prize 9whatever that is)?

Karim chouikhen said...

Macduff either had to leave his family or take them with him to join the Malcom's army to kill Macbeth.
But even if Macduff took his family there was a chance that he could have got cought and he would of blown the secret. So Macduff really had no choice.

Josh said...

Hey Miss, Sorry I took so long to reply. Well yes Macduff did do the right thing in leaving his family, he did it for his country, if he didn't then Macbeth would've still been in power most likely. Yes it was a unknowningly sacrifice Macduff made but he still did it, and when his sword went through Macbeths body, Macduff's revenge was complete and his family could rest.

Lillian Leptos said...

hi Karim
you said...
Macduff really had no choice. With a brutal and bloodthirsty man like Macbeth as an opponent, Maduff's family was going to be at risk either way. You could be right. After all, in every thane's castle, macbeth kept a servant paid to pass on all that he saw and heard. do you think Macduff cared more about revenging the death of his family than supporting the rightful successor to the scottish throne (Malcolm)? Have a look at the sorts of things he says before/ in the final battle with Macbeth, and use this to respond to this question if you can.

July 25, 2007 8:59 PM

Lillian Leptos said...

Hi Josh
You say that Macduff did do the right thing in leaving his family. You believe that his duty to his country is greater than his duty to his family and when his sword went through Macbeths body, Macduff's revenge was complete and his family could rest, probably in the thought that he had done his duty on both counts. There is evidence for this in Macduff's first words after he kills Macbeth. His words are words of triumph..."Hail king, for so thou art. Behold here stand the usurper's head..." He is powerfully aware that he has done his duty and given the crown back to the rightful successor. He did "feel it (the murder of his family) as a man", but more important for him was the legacy that his actions had left Scotland with. Can you see Macduff ever running off the rails like macbeth and maybe teaming up with Donalbain, to usurp the throne from Malcolm and to get further "honours" or rewards from a grateful traitor?

Josh C said...

It would be a great story if Macduff and Donalbain teamed up but I think that Macduff is to loyal to his country regardless, unless Donalbain turned evil and converted Macduff to join forces against Malcom.

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