In this self-paced lesson, students explore how Shakespeare uses supernatural elements in Macbeth. The lesson begins with an exploration of beliefs about the supernatural and witchcraft in Shakespeare’s time as presented in a segment from Shakespeare Uncovered. Students turn to the text of Macbeth and analyze the action, imagery, characterization, and language of Act I, Scene iii (the scene in which Macbeth and Banquo first encounter the witches and hear their predictions). Then, students view another segment from Shakespeare Uncovered and explore key questions about the role of the witches in the action of Macbeth. Finally, they examine other supernatural episodes in the play and produce a paper exploring the impact and meaning of one of these episodes. This lesson is best used after a reading of Macbeth.
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