Importance Of Knowledge In Macbeth

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Knowledge is a powerful tool and can be beneficial or destructive, depending on the person’s personality and decisions. This is depicted in William Shakespeare’s Macbeth, a play about a man, Macbeth, who believes it is his fate to be king due to three witches’ prophecies. During his quest to acquire and keep the crown, he commits murders, goes crazy, and loses most human emotion. Macbeth becomes increasingly less human and more monstrous due to his greed for power and misuse of knowledge.

After the opening battle, Macbeth is honored by other and upholds his morals despite knowing the prophecies. The captain of the Scottish army commends Macbeth for his resilience and murder of Macdonwald, saying “brave Macbeth-well he deserves that name”
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Sharing his plan with Lady Macbeth, the would-be queen, shows he hoped “it would find welcome lodgement with her,” and she would encourage his greed for more power (Flathe 2). Realizing it is against his morals, Macbeth tries to back out of the murder plan but he is “charged with cowardice” by Lady Macbeth (Richardson 1). She scolds him for being too frightened to achieve his goal to become king and not being “the same in thine own act and valor as thou art in desire” (1.7.40-41). This accusation spurs his ambition and his greed, so he murders Duncan, knowing the prophecies are on his side. By committing this crime, Macbeth destroys a bond with a parent-like figure and violates the “powers of [his] own superego, or conscience” (Reid 5). The destruction of his superego results in the loss to control impulses, to consider morals in decisions, and causes guilt. While murdering Duncan, he hears a voice shout, “Macbeth shall sleep no more,” testifying to his loss of innocence and mental unrest that plagues him (2.2.42). Transition Macbeth now sees Banquo and Fleance as a threat to the throne because of the witches’ prophecy that Banquo’s sons will be kings and because “[Banquo] hath a wisdom that doth guide his valor,” a control of impulses Macbeth lacks (3.1.52). Macbeth has murderers kill Banquo and attempt to kill Fleance because of …show more content…
Macbeth wants revenge on Macduff for being a traitor by killing his family, resolving that, “this deed I’ll do before this purpose cool” (4.1.154). Macbeth cannot control his anger and refuses to see reality by acting before thinking. His murder of Lady Macduff and her child “eliminates the third and most fundamental human bond” (Reid 7). The bond between mother and child is the first step for the child to build its identity, and by destroying it Macbeth destroyed his identity. Admitting he used to be scared of every sound, Macbeth now says, “I have almost forgotten the taste of tears,” showing he lacks human emotion and is acting like a robot (5.5.9). He still has ambition and is willing to fight to the death, but he does not feel guilt due to lack of emotion. His greed for the crown and willingness to go after it “suppressed every amiable and virtuous principle” that he possessed before the knowledge of the prophecies (Richardson 1). However, he has not lost his confidence but rather gained the feeling of invincibility due to the witches’ prophecy that only a man not born from a woman can harm him. Who is not born from a woman? Macbeth does not fear any weapons “brandished by a man that’s of a woman born” because of the prophecy (5.7.13). In addition, he loses the will to live because, in his opinion, life is “told by an

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