Macbeth Insanity Analysis

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Macbeth, written by William Shakespeare, is a play that mainly focuses on one common theme of insanity. Macbeth gradually becomes plagued by intense guilt as his desire for power drives him to attain his goals by any means necessary, including committing murder. He kills Duncan in cold blood in order to become King, has Banquo killed by three murderers because he wishes to maintain his position as King, and finally, he has Macduff’s family slaughtered. Each of these occurrences takes place because of Macbeth’s will to be King, or they are a result of his guilt. Nonetheless, they are all completed of his free will, which is what causes him to deteriorate mentally. After each of these events, Macbeth’s sanity takes a hit and he begins to hallucinate …show more content…

Frantic, he orders a group of murderers to kill Macduff’s family. Consequently, when the time comes for Macbeth to encounter Macduff on the battlefield, he exhibits a moment of hesitation before proceeding to the duel. Feeling remorse for having Macduff’s entire family violently killed, Macbeth admits that he has a guilty conscience that he does not want to kill Macduff as well. “Of all men else I have avoided thee: / But get thee back; my soul is too much charged / With blood of thine already,” (Shakespeare 5. VIII. 5-7). In this instance, Macbeth shows that he can feel guilt, and he exhibits this by demonstrating that he does not desire to end the life of a man whose family was already victimized at his hands. Guilt is the one thing throughout the entire play that stops Macbeth dead in his tracks and causes him to take a moment to consider his present and future courses of action. Although Macbeth was lead to commit murder by the witches’ manipulative predictions of the future, he is the one who ultimately makes the choices that prove that he is in control of his actions, even when his actions cause him to be filled with …show more content…

However, he fundamentally makes the choice to murder Duncan. Before Macbeth performs this treasonous act, he behaves as though he is extremely unwilling to do so and his brain begins to play tricks on him. “Is this a dagger which I see before me, / The handle toward my hand? Come, let me clutch thee,” (Shakespeare 2.I.40-41). Although Macbeth experiences guilt before he kills Duncan, he reaches an entire new level of paranoia and fear after he chooses to complete the plan. The Thane of Glamis has nightmares, hears voices, and refuses to talk or think about the deed. While Macbeth chooses to pin the blame on others and convinces himself that the death needed to occur, the murder was of no fault but his own. The death of King Duncan is the most prominent event in Macbeth that not only commences Macbeth’s mental deterioration, but also shows that he was not forced by anything or anybody to commit any sinful acts. Following the moment when he paints his hands with King Duncan’s scarlet blood, Macbeth slowly spirals toward the realm of

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