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The Struggle For Power In Macbeth

1197 words - 5 pages

The desire for power seems to be one of the strongest human drive and there are many ways which it is shown. Sometimes the need for power becomes overwhelming and can take over a person physically and mentally. A person’s judgement can easily be clouded due to the desire to be in control. Once one has the idea of gaining power and are willing to do anything for it, they start to change as a person. Knowing that you are powerful and in control, it can sometimes be beneficial or harmful. If a person is careful and wise, having power would be a good thing. They can use it to improve themselves or to help others with selfless acts. But in reality most people are selfish and are not as giving. They only do things that would benefit them, even if that means hurting someone else. In the play Macbeth by William Shakespeare, the struggle for power is presented throughout the play. The characters are so power crazed that it leads to their downfall. This play gives you the deep understanding on how wanting power so much that it can actually change you as a person or even kill you.
In the play Macbeth, the character Lady Macbeth shows a great deal of struggle to gain power. Just at the beginning of the play as she was being introduced, Shakespeare presents her as a character that is willing to do anything for power. Lady Macbeth receives a letter from her husband Macbeth saying that it was in his prophecy to become the next Thane of Cawdor. Without questioning her husband or the prophecy, she immediately jumps to a conclusion. To her, killing the current king Duncan would be the only way. But she had one fear in mind, Macbeth. “Yet do I fear thy nature; It is too full o’th’ milk of human kindness.” ( 1.5.13-14). Lady Macbeth knew that her husband was going to be too weak to kill Duncan because he was too caring as a person. She had to be the one to convince him to change his mind set and focus on what was really important, in this case power. To Lady Macbeth her husband is too emotional and does not have a strong will. She is afraid that Macbeth would not be strong enough to follow through with the plans of killing Duncan.
Since she could not fully depend on her husband, Lady Macbeth asked for inner strength. “ Unsex me here, And fill me from the crown to the top-full Of direst cruelty. Make thick my blood.” (1.5.38-40) . She asks the evil spirits to strip her of all femininity and anything that could possibly make her weak. She also wants to block out any guilt that she might feel afterward. Lady Macbeth believes that if she had all of the characteristics of a male she would have enough strength to kill Duncan on her own. Lady Macbeth believed that being a female made her powerless and emotionally weak. She knew that if Duncan was to be killed, all of the power would be hers.
Lady Macbeth is willing to do anything for power. “ Come to my woman’s breasts and take my milk for gall, you murd’ring ministers.”( 1.5.44-45). She talks about how...

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