Fair Is Foul Theme In Macbeth

684 Words3 Pages

Peter Liu
Period 5
Fair is Foul The play Macbeth, written by William Shakespeare, takes place in Medieval Scotland and involves the rise to power of a noble, Macbeth, and his wife, Lady Macbeth. After hearing the predictions of three witches, Macbeth and his wife act according to his fate, resulting in a number of consequences. Throughout the play, the characters are influenced by their inability to see the true characteristic of events and people, resulting in a “fair is foul” world where nothing is as it seems. In the play Macbeth, Lady Macbeth exemplifies the “fair is foul” theme.
Initially, her personality is one of the most apparent examples of the “fair is foul” theme. For example, she advises her husband to “Look like th’ innocent …show more content…

After Lady Macbeth has become queen, she would rather “be that which we destroy, Than by destruction dwell in doubtful joy” (3.2.8-9). She would rather be Duncan, who she helped murder, than be queen in constant fear. Lady Macbeth murdered Duncan to become queen; however, being queen is a new source of problems. In this way, the “fair is foul” world renders her unable to correctly judge the nature of things, such as the consequences of her actions. In the same way that expectations of Lady Macbeth failed to hold up to reality, Lady Macbeth’s expectations were unreliable, because of the veil of “fair is …show more content…

Her personality shows “fair is foul” because her outer appearance contrasts from her inner personality. Her own inability to perceive the world demonstrates the extent of “fair is foul” is beyond her grasp. Her own change at the end of the play proves that even Lady Macbeth, as well as people in general, cannot know herself correctly. Most significantly, since the true nature of things is indeterminable through“fair is foul,” people’s assumptions based on observation are unreliable to an extent. Actions based on these assumptions are not fully justifiable; and, as seen in Lady Macbeth, the consequences or results of making any decisions may or may not be

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