Guilt Essay

1224 words - 5 pages

Maya AslamJahanBlock HMarch 22, 2014Guilt takes overGuilt is the heavy feeling in a person's heart when they commit a crime such as stealing candy or a life. It is the feeling of having done wrong or failing in obligation. Guilt causes the degradation of the soul and human mind, and can be reflected through symbolism, imagery and motifs in the plays Macbeth by William Shakespeare and Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini.An individual's mental state in a text is shown by the symbols they reference. Macbeth and Lady Macbeth's guilt is lodged in their conscience, and is revealed by the constant symbol of blood and washing their hands. When Macbeth says, "Will all great Neptune's ocean wash this blood / Clean from my hand?"(II.ii.78-79 Shakepeare), it is a reference to how his guilt permanently stained his character. The ocean is a hyperbole that demonstrates that the stain cannot fade. Also, water symbolizes purity meaning Duncan's murder makes Macbeth impure. On a more physical note, Lady Macbeth's suicide represents how her guilt overcame her. Her hallucinations of Duncan's blood proved too much for her. The reversal of gender roles presents itself, as Lady Macbeth was a man-like figure with bold features that progressed to a frail woman-like figure. This proves that guilt degrades your health to the point where you become an insomniac or lose sense of reality. In a modern world, the blue kite is a symbol in The Kite Runner. It brings Amir closer to Baba because Baba was a champion kite fighter but it symbolizes his inner guilt as he let Hassan get raped to receive the blue kite and Baba's love. Amir defines himself by guilt when he says, "I became what I am today at the age of twelve"(Hosseini 1). It foreshadows that the text will reflect his evolution to a complex character and that his actions would affect the turnout of events, such as him leaving to find Sohrab. The pomegranate tree shows how guilt can destroy a soul. Amir and Hassan's friendship was the tree's soul. Before everything happened, the tree was healthy and fruit bearing. However, after Hassan died and Amir returned to Kabul he described it as a "wilted, leafless tree"(Hosseini 264) that had not borne fruit in years. The soul of the tree passed on when Amir's guiltiness destroyed his childhood friendship with Hassan. Feelings and emotions are determined as the weakness of the heart, but motifs are used as stylistic devices by the author.Motifs are dominant ideas that are repeated in different sections of a text. Hallucinations show the disturbance in nature. The two causes of Macbeth and Lady Macbeth's hallucinations are their guilt and lack of sleep. Shakespeare uses hallucinations to reflect that their mental state is decreasing. Guilt causes the mental state of a person to degrade, as Macbeth's guilt made him so anxious that he became an insomniac while also seeing visions and hallucinations. His guilt had started to set before Duncan's murder when he says, "Is this a dagger which I...

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