Macbeth Tragic Hero Essay, Research Paper
Tragic Hero or Villain?
MacBeth the play is considered a tragedy and every tragedy needs a tragic hero. There are many factors that caused the degeneration of Macbeth. Macbeth is not a villlian in this story he is a tragic hero. The major factor that started the downfall was the prophecy by the witches in Act 1, Scene 3.
The witches were praising Macbeth. The first witch said, All hail, Macbeth! Hail to thee, Thane of Glamis! The second witch said, All hail, Macbeth! Hail to thee, Thane of Cawder! The third witch said, All hail, Macbeth! That shalt be King hereafter! When Macbeth and Banquo are leaving the witches Banquo is told that he won t be King but his son s will be.
In the middle of Act 1 scene 3, Ross tells Macbeth that the Thane of Cawdor is being executed and he will be taking his place. Now Macbeth believes the prophecy told by the witches. He hasn t quite figured out how he will become King. One of the things that could have also contributed to Macbeth s downfall is that he is too vulnerable and he believes everything that he hears. The witches corrupt Macbeth s character and make him power hungry.
In Act 1, Scene 5 Macbeth wrote a letter to Lady Macbeth. Lady Macbeth has a crazy idea; the King is staying in their castle, giving Macbeth a chance to kill the King and become King. Lady Macbeth corrupts Macbeth even more by putting ideas in his head.
In Act 1 Scene 7, Macbeth thinks about Lady Macbeth plan. This shows that Macbeth is having a person vs. self-conflict. He isn t sure what he should do and he is analyzing if he does this the outcome will be this Also in this soliloquy Macbeth seems to be fighting against his conscience. The end of Act 1 lady Macbeth is asking Macbeth if he had slept and she also said that he looks sickly. Then she compares him to a cat that wants the fish but never wants to get his paws wet. This line is an example of one of the many times that Lady Macbeth challenges her husbands manhood.
Lady Macbeth is one of the contributers of the degeneration of Macbeth. She pressured himinto doing many things that he wouldn t have done if she wasn t there to talk him into it. At the end of Act 2, Scene 1 Macbeth has another soliloquy and he is imagining the daggers in his hands. He feels that there is something wrong with him. Macbeth knows that the whole situation is wrong but it to him it seems like the perfect time to take action. He believes the prophecies and he is willing to risk everything to be King. In Scene 2 Lady Macbeth claims that she would kill Duncan but he resembles her father. She is trying to say I would do it why wont you? This is another example of when Lady Macbeth is pressuring her husband.
Before Macbeth kills Duncan he said, This is a sorry sight. Lady Macbeth says, A foolish thought, to say a sorry sight. Lady Macbeth just seems so evil. Macbeth doubts himself until Lady Macbeth pushes him and threatens him. She is pretending to be strong and she is pushing Macbeth to be a man . After Macbeth has killed Duncan he seems to be in shock and he just doesn t know what to do with the daggers or himself. Macbeth is so confused that Lady Macbeth has to take the daggers and do the rest of the work.
In Scene 3 Macbeth fears Banquo who used to be his confidant. He fears that Banquo knows too much because he heard the prophecy from the witches. Macbeth thinks that Banquo will kill him, so his sons will become king. He also thinks that Banquo s sons shouldn t be King because he has killed the King and went through so much grief for nothing. The thing Macbeth thinks is pure evil. Macbeth turns the murderers against Banquo and convinces them that he is the bad person. He wants Banquo dead but he doesn t want to do it himself because he doesn t want the guilt on his shoulders.
In Act 3 Scene 2 Lady Macbeth is thinking that it is safer to be destroyed than to be alive. Then when Macbeth enters, she tells him what s done is done and everything that has been done should be with no regret. Macbeth responds negatively, he says that they will eat their meal in fear, and sleep with terrible dreams, then he says its better to be with the dead. Lady Macbeth is trying to make him feel better because he is uneasy and is a changed person. Then she tells him to be normal and pleasant for his guest tonight.
Macbeth sees the ghost of Banquo goes insane. This shows that he is crazy or that the ghost of Banquo is there to haunt him. All the evidence above proves that Macbeth is a tragic hero. The characteristic of a tragic hero is that they have to be of high status not just a common person. Also a tragic hero must have a character flaw, like Macbeth. Also the tragic hero must commit a crime or something horrible that will lead to their downfall. All these are qualities of Macbeth and this is why he can be classified as a tragic hero.