Macbeth's Character Flaw in William Shakespeare's Play

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Macbeth's Character Flaw in William Shakespeare's Play Macbeth, a good man with a small character flaw, represents the epitome of good vs. evil and how the revenge of one man can be his or the downfall of another. Shakespeare's Macbeth starts off by first establishing its basis of good vs. evil by placing the three witches who are deciding what to do with Macbeth. The witches, as well as every evil entity, represent the extreme of revenge ever since God cast them out of heaven. Their only purpose is to cause harm and unrest to humans in order to keep us out of heaven.1 Macbeth is a good man who has fought bravely and will be rewarded. The witches pick out his small character flaw and slowly tweak it until they have him doing what they want for their evil plans. As soon as Macbeth decides to believe what the witches say and starts to listen to their prophecies, he has lost the battle of good vs. evil inside himself succumbing to the dark side. He begins to feel, with a little help from Lady Macbeth, that he is entitled to be king and should do whatever it takes to become king. This notion is rooted in the fact that the witches first predicted Macbeth would become the Thane of Caldore; their second prediction was that Macbeth would become the king. 2 1 Denis Calandra, Cliffs Notes on Shakespears' Macbeth. (Lincoln: Cliffs Notes Inc., 1979.) 5 2 Edward Dowden, Shakespear: A Critical Study of His Mind and Art. (New York: Harper and Brothers, 1873; Reprinted By Barnes & Noble, Inc., 1965.) 32 1 The only problem and main difference between the two predictions is that in the first prediction Macbeth did not have to do anything following it. For the second prediction he thought he was required to kill whoever got in his way. Maybe if he had just let things run their course, he would have become king eventually or maybe not.3 His wife also symbolizes evil. She was so corrupt and immoral that she would pull the babe suckling on her breast and crush its head if it got in the way of her accomplishing her goals. Evil had apparently won her over a long time ago.4 Although her outer appearance maintains cold and monstrous throughout the play even when she goes insane at the end, she has a good side as do all humans.

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