Macbeth And John Milton 's Paradise Lost Essay

Macbeth And John Milton 's Paradise Lost Essay

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We all battle good and evil, right and wrong, moral or immoral, internally on an everyday basis. A good person, by society’s standards, will always be compelled to do the good thing, the right thing, the moral thing. However, to be compelled to do the right thing does not signify and in no means guarantee that an internal battle between good and evil is not being fought, or that good will win. Sometimes, more often than not, the evil, wrong, immoral side of the fight presents such an alluring personal gain that these “Good Men”, no matter how compelled to do the opposite, succumb to it. In both William Shakespeare’s Macbeth and John Milton’s Paradise Lost the main character rationalizes their evil deeds with good intentions. However, both writers managed to create characters with similar internal rationalizations but with a different outlook on the outcome of their actions.
Macbeth and Satan both initially are presented as the cream of the crop. Macbeth is an honorable, brave warrior, who 's battlefield notoriety brings great honor to his name. Macbeth, holding a great amount of recognition and praise from everyone including King Duncan, is anything but an average joe. Satan, or more accurately put, Lucifer is the number one angel in Heaven. Any ordinary angel’s name always ends in “-el”, but Lucifer’s name didn’t because he was special, he was the favorite. The very origin of his name means “brightest light”. These characters are the epitome of good, by any standards. To be honorable and deemed specially favored should set the tone for an individual of moral, good character. However, it is through the use of these exemplary standards that evil is emphasized. Thus bringing into context the ever present feared sayi...


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...hold both the struggle of good vs evil and in both evil wins. However, each work of literature holds a different definition of winning. It is that difference that truly identifies their similarities and disparities. The characters in both can be seen struggling with the triumph of Evil. Yet, it is how each character develops after the triumph of evil that the reader can fully analyze and conclude that both depict continued battles. We are all evil, some of us like Macbeth will be driven insane with the after-thoughts of an evil deed committed. While some of us will embrace the thought that we are simply good at being evil. Neither outlook is right or wrong. The true conflict that these works of literature highlight is not the prevalence of either, but the struggle that everyone endures everyday to find a subjective median between the two.



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