Power Corrupts In Macbeth

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“It is not power that corrupts but fear. Fear of losing power corrupts those who wield it and fear of the scourge of power corrupts those who are subject to it.”
- Aung San Suu Kyi Power corrupts. After individuals come into a position of power, control becomes second nature to them. They find it excruciatingly strenuous to relinquish the authority they have. They find it onerous to “give away” the power that they hold on so endearingly to. To retain control, situations arise in which individuals will resort to committing unspeakable acts. Throughout the Shakespearean tragedy Macbeth, this theme has been reiterated several times. Shakespeare has used the characters to portray different ideologies. The most prominent example of “power corrupts”
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All three of these characters are brave, loyal, and want to seek the truth about what happened to King Duncan. As the play further progresses, Banquo, Macbeth’s companion and friend is told by the witches that “Thou wilt get kings, though thou be none.” Another reason that Macbeth kills Banquo is because Banquo was with him when the witches gave the prophecy that Macbeth would become King, and he is afraid that Banquo suspects him and is secretly plotting against him. In addition, Macbeth is afraid that Banquo’s son, Fleance, will take the throne from Macbeth. In this example, we can see that Macbeth will stop at nothing to retain control. Perhaps even more gruesome and revolting is when Macbeth becomes furious with Macduff’s treason and says, “I’ll put a sword to his wife, children and all unfortunate souls who might follow him.” Macbeth is so delusional to keep his power that he is willing to kill an innocent family to preserve his throne. Macbeth ends up killing Macduff’s entire family, and this leads to Macduff vowing to get vengeance against Macbeth for his cowardly actions. This shows the impact that power had on Macbeth, and the fear of Macbeth that changed peoples’ lives

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