You are not currently logged in. Please create an account or log in to view the full course.

English Literature   >   Shakespeare: Macbeth


  • About
  • Transcript
  • Cite

Shakespeare: Macbeth

In this nineteen-part course, Professor John McRae (University of Nottingham) explores Shakespeare’s Macbeth. We begin with a broad introduction to historical, political, and intellectual context of early 17th-century England. After that, we go through the play scene by scene, providing close reading and detailed analysis, with commentary on character, plot, themes and motifs, language, symbolism – and more.

Note: We use the Arden edition of the play. Students using a different version of the play may encounter slight differences in both the text and line numbers.


In this module, we provide a broad introduction to the world of Macbeth, focusing in particular on the historical, political and intellectual context of early 17th-century England, especially the concepts of harmony and chaos, the importance of the numbers three and twenty-seven in the structure of the play, and the importance of James I, England’s new Scottish king.

Cite this Lecture

APA style

McRae, J. (2018, August 28). Shakespeare: Macbeth - Introduction [Video]. MASSOLIT.

MLA style

McRae, J. "Shakespeare: Macbeth – Introduction." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 28 Aug 2018,


Prof. John McRae

Prof. John McRae

Nottingham University