Shakespeare's Macbeth: Criminal As A Criminal?

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In the play “Macbeth”, William Shakespeare portrays Macbeth as a guilty criminal who acts on his free will to achieve his desires. Macbeth starts out as an innocent man but then changes once he hears of three witches who tell him his future and what it entails. He lets all of the fantasies and power get to him and turn him into a devious person in disguise. Macbeth actions are based on free will because he has the ability to make conscious decisions and know all the options. He is also aware of and subsequently ignores his internal emotions to listen to external opinions. He knows all the possible consequences that will come with his actions but he decides to act on them anyways. All these reasons are why Macbeth is a criminal acting on free …show more content…
Many times Macbeth has put aside his emotions and judgement to listen to what others think he should do and acts upon their judgment instead of his own. One major scene where this happens is when he is contemplating whether to kill Duncan or not. Once the idea of killing Duncan is brought up Macbeth steps aside and has a whole soliloquy about whether or not he should go through with this ambitious deed. Macbeth thinks of all the reason why he has no right to kill Duncan when he has been nothing be loyal, kind, and grateful towards him. Macbeth expresses his feelings of how he is “his kinsman and subject, strong both against the deed; then, as his host, who should against his murderer shut the door, not bear the knife myself.” (Shakespeare 1.4.13-16) When telling lady Macbeth that he can not commit this terrible deed she then explains all the reasons why he must. Macbeth ignores his conscience and follows through with killing Duncan. Many people argue that Lady Macbeth influenced Macbeth to kill Duncan and that he did not kill him due to free will but that is not the case here. Macbeth chooses to listen to Lady Macbeth, he knew he should not kill Duncan but he does it anyways. This act leads to Macbeth questioning himself and realizing again how he has ignored his feelings. After killing Duncan Macbeth if full of so many emotions that he doesn 't know what to …show more content…
Macbeth exemplifies this thought out the play with actions he makes. He first starts out with killing his beloved,loyal, and trustworthy friend Banquo. He betrays Banquo’s trust and friendship by having him murdered so his sons will not be king. Macbeth knows that with every action made comes a consequence and for him in this situation the consequence was guilt. This guilt takes shape of Banquo and huantes him by showing up at his dinner and sitting in his chair. Macbeth is shocked by what he sees and thinks that “if charnel houses and our graves must send those that we bury back” (Shakespeare 3.4.85) to the ones who have acted upon evil. Many people argue that Macbeth is a victim here because he did not know he would be haunted but he knew something was going to happen due to his actions and he made the decision to follow through with his action. All of Macbeth’s actions add up and lead to his downfall in life. When he chose to kill Macduff’s family he knew that Macduff would try to get revenge, and he did. Macduff gathers an army of men to fight in battle against Macbeth and bring him to justice. Macbeth hears of this army that is marching towards his place and knows he has to fight. They “have tied [him] to a stake, [he] can not fly, but, bear-like, [he] must fight the course” (Shakespeare 5.6.1) he has sent himself down. Macbeth’s

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