Macbeth Corruptive Ambition Essay

Macbeth Corruptive Ambition Essay

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Macbeth is a play about the corruptive force of ambition. Discuss this statement with particular reference to the characters in the play.

Macbeth written by Shakespeare, is a tragic and historical thriller play filled with action-packed murders and the fall of man. The characters are portrayed to have personal ambitions. Shakespeare displayed these ambitions to both be destructive and constructive. Which unchecked ambition has detrimental impacts as shown in the main characters and checked, cautious ambition can help influence and encourage others. Ambition is an overarching theme found common in the play and could also be shown for the sake of justice and a positive characteristic. These ambitions were either presented as fatal flaws shown in the character or the eventual development of unchecked and checked ambition.

In Macbeth, Shakespeare displays the corruptive forces found in Lady Macbeth by limning how unchecked ambition led to her death. Her shared desire with Macbeth for power and rule overcame what she could handle. She is shown to be more ambitious than Macbeth since she's the first to act on it. Initially she wasn't a bad person but her unchecked ambition had let her to be fill of guilt. This creates a ripple effect on Macbeth's actions. When she recognises that Macbeth lacks courage she hopes that she could, 'chastise with the valour of my tongue,' to convince him to kill Duncan. Here, she metaphorically believes she's brave because she's showing courage in the face of 'danger'. However, once Duncan was killed, she's left with discontent and guilt. In her loneliness, she says aloud that 'nought's had (is) all's spent, where our desire is got without content.' With this rhyming sequence, she feels that nothing has be...


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...ey will be the driving force of his ambition. He doesn't want power but justice for he's heir but for others such as Macduff who has suffered the consequences of Macbeth's murders.

Macbeth is a play that explores the dangers of ambition and its corruptive forces. However, Shakespeare also focuses on the merit of checked ambition and how it can be a driving force for justice. Lady Macbeth's unchecked, corruptive ambition led her to become full of guilt. Whereas, Macbeth knew about his ambitions and recognised their dark consequences. Yet, he continued to act on them as he couldn't control them. Much the same as Macbeth, Malcolm acknowledged his ambitions and used him to encourage himself and others to work for the good. All of these characters showed ambitions but it is the way they utilised these ambitions and acted on them is what differentiate them from each other.

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