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William Shakespeare wrote four great tragedies the last of which was written in 1606 and titled Macbeth This tragedy as it is considered by societal critics of yesterdays literary world scrutinizes the evil dimension of conflict offering a dark and gloomy atmosphere of a world dominated by the powers ofdarkness Macbeth more so than any of Shakespeares other tragic protagonists has to face the powers and decide should he succumb or should he resist Macbeth understands the reasons for resisting evil and yet he proceeds with a disastrous plan instigated by the prophecies of the three Weird Sisters Thus we must ask the question If Macbeth is acting on the impulses stimulated by the prophecies of his fate is this Shakespearean work of art really a Tragedy Aristotle one of the greatest men in the history of human thought interpreted Tragedy as a genre aimed to present a heightened and harmonious imitation of nature and in particular those aspects of nature that touch most closely upon human life This I think Macbeth attains However Aristotle adds a few conditions According to Aristotle a tragedy must have six parts plot character diction thought spectacle and song Most important is the plot the structure of the incidents Tragedy is not an imitation of men but of action and life It is by mens actions that they acquire happiness or sadness Aristotle stated in response to Plato that tragedy produces a healthful effect on the human character through a katharsis a proper purgation of pity and terror A successful tragedy then exploits and appeals at the start to two basic emotions fear and pity Tragedy deals with the element of evil with what we least want and most fear to face and with what is destructive to
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