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Violence was and remains today a versatile concept in theatre Violence is something we desire to see as an audience yet simultaneously a majority of people would never commit the atrocities found in Macbeth There exists a thin line between acceptable violence and violence that turns an audience away from sympathizing with a character In this essay we will evaluate the differences between the various forms of violence found within Macbeth and analyze why the audience can accept some acts of violence while deeming others inhumane The clearest breeds of violence found in the play are war violence law breaking violence sociopathic violence and descriptive violence Shakespeare places these different forms of violence side-by-side and evaluates how they are interrupted differently by society some violence is rewarded while other acts are punishable by death Each one of these forms has a specific manner in affecting the pathos of Macbeths audience either by increasing respect or creating a loss of connection between Macbeths bloody acts and his audience In the Elizabethan era it was not uncommon for everyday people to carry around a copy of Foxes Book of Martrs Brown 38 This book is shockingly grotesque and surpasses any violence in modern videogames For example a Sicilian woman named Agatha whom suffered a long and gruesome death on account of her job as a prostitute is the epitome of the kind of violence found in the bookPursuant to his orders she was scourged burnt with red-hot irons and torn with sharp hooks Having borne these torments with admirable fortitude she was next laid naked upon live coals intermingled with glass and then being carried back to prison she there expired on February 5 251 Foxe 233These descriptive paragraphs about torture run throughout the entire book and are borderline sensationalism Therefore it was almost mandatory for Shakespeare to include this publicly loved violence in his plays and this is one of the styles of violence that
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