Theme Of Sleep Loss In Macbeth

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Sleep is necessary in both healing from injuries and regaining energy. However, many factors can keep someone from not being able to sleep, despite the need. Discomfort, excitement, and guilt are common reasons why people find themselves unable to sleep. In the Tragedy of Macbeth, many characters suffer from sleeping problems. Macbeth suffers from guilt and possibly paranoia, while Banquo experiences sleep deprivation from “the cursed thoughts that nature/ Gives way to in repose” (Macbeth 2.1.8-9). since he killed King Duncan, commissioned the murder of his friend Banquo and his son, and sent murderers after his enemy Macduff’s wife and children. Lady Macbeth sleepwalks later in the play when she realizes that most of her evil deeds against …show more content…

While it is to happen to characters that are never named nor actually seen in the play, it foreshadows that later, an important character will have the same ailment. Part of the curse she was going to put on him involved him not being able to sleep. This is the first time in the play lack of sleep is mentioned as a punishment for selfish desires. Except to express that they are witches capable of cursing people, this anecdote seems to have no purpose, unless it was to foreshadow the events of Macbeth and Lady Macbeth’s lives. Lady Macbeth planned King Duncan’s murder so she could have the power of being queen, a selfish desire that led to Macbeth becoming king and having to commit more murders to cover up his trail. She is helpless as she watches her husband become victim to several moments of insanity and sleeplessness. One such instance of this is during the banquet in honor of Macbeth’s coronation. It is possible that, had Macbeth been sleeping fine, he would have not seen the ghost of Banquo, or he might have seen it, but been in command of his mental state enough to not say anything aloud. Since he did see it, and he caused commotion about it, all the lords leave and he and his wife engage in a conversation about his abilities. She says to him, “You lack the season of all natures, sleep” (Macbeth 3.4.147). This shows that Macbeth has not been sleeping much, if at all. Therefore, a reader can conclude that the story of the sailor has had a part in the overall plot of Macbeth by the fact that Macbeth suffered from similar

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