The Concrete Dangers Of Abstra Essay

2773 words - 11 pages

The Concrete Dangers of Abstract Illusion Man is in control of world, and consequently of his existence. Since the effervescence of human greatness created by the Renaissance, the superiority of man has been continually accentuated through our culture. However, there still remains the domain of abstract concepts, which cannot be mastered, or even grasped entirely by the most profound member of human civilization. In the realm of these abstract concepts, William Shakespeare had already incorporated the use of different settings and characters to create an almost supernatural environment for his praised plays. The Tragedy of Macbeth proves to be no exception. In effect, in this play tracing the political rise and disastrous fall of a Scottish thane during the feudal times, the characters are dominated by several intangible concepts, whether they are simply nature, ambition, or the more complex effects caused by illusion. In more precise terms, Shakespeare makes a comment on this subject, as his portrayal of Macbeth's gradual deterioration clearly leads to the reader's understanding of the dangers of illusion. In fact, even before the appearance of the main character, the prevalence of this theme can already be noticed in the first scene, through the obscure and deranging apparition of the three witches. In effect, the three "Weird Sisters" are the generators of Macbeth's illusions, and it can already be seen that the source of these predictions cannot be entrusted. More specifically, we first see the witches preparing "to meet Macbeth" in the midst of a stormy weather. This ambiance, further emphasized by such expressions as "Fair is foul, and foul is fair", already creates a supernatural mood and foreshadows both the dangerous aspect of illusions, as well as their lack of veracity. In effect, both the uncontrollable aspect of life and the persistent mention of "equivocation" are hinted through the mystical aspect of the witches, and their intermingling of "foul and fair", true and false, reality and predictions. When faced to such creatures, a human, however powerful and exceptional, cannot lead or even direct the trajectory of his life or his environment. As the reader notices, Macbeth will fall in the same depths of catastrophe led by illusion. In contrast to this macabre sight is the political and physical chaos expressed by war in the second scene of Act One. In effect, Macbeth is portrayed as "cannons overcharged with double cracks". Thus, at this point, Macbeth still maintains control of reality, as he dominates the battle bravely and honorably. In composing this scene, Shakespeare further accentuates the future detriments of the thane due to illusions. In effect, the lord remains successful both publicly and privately as long as he does not confuse ideal with the present. This is immediately confirmed by the following scene, when the meeting with the witches forces Macbeth to consider the possibility of regicide, as he...

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