Lady Macbeth and Macbeth are not the stereotypical husband and wife. When Lady Macbeth is being introduced we can see the sense of dominance and power in her character over her husband, Macbeth, which is not the average stereotypical trait of a woman. Lady Macbeth blatantly distinguishes herself as the dominant force in the relationship. For instance, when Macbeth is hesitant of how to manage King Duncan’s visit to their home, Lady Macbeth instantly seizes control of the situation, demanding that Macbeth lets her take control of the situation as shown when she says, “Let me handle tonight’s preparations, because tonight will change every night and day for the rest of our lives.” (1.5. 57-60). This is an example of how the gender roles are reversed as the men/husbands of our society are usually portrayed as being assertive or dominant to handling situations, not the women/wives.
Lady Macbeth who is initially presented as the motivating force in the relationship. Her intentions are purely directed toward obtaining immediate power. For example, after rst learning about the witches’ predictions, she immediately creates a murder plan and takes charge of the situation. This is made evident as she emotionlessly explains to her husband, “You should project a peaceful mood, because if you look troubled, you will arouse suspicion. Leave all the rest to me.” (1.5. 63-65).
The gender reversals of the Macbeth’s throughout the play are evidently represented in multiple ways such as, their amount of ambition, dominance and assertiveness in their marriage, guilt, and personalities. Shakespeare’s tragedy “Macbeth” explores and de es the idea of traditional gender standards through the plot progression within Macbeth, in which the roles of Lady Macbeth and Macbeth are reversed. Macbeth challenges the explicit gender norms that society has placed on, both past and present, men and women. Lady Macbeth and Macbeth switch gender roles and explicitly show the dominant traits that the other gender clearly possess. Lady Macbeth clearly breaks several gender norms and expectations with her cold- heartiness and evident masculine characteristics as Macbeth did the same with his more feminine characteristics. Yet, the plot progression throughout the play negatively shows how the characters transition into more of their gender roles and how it leads to their downfall.