How and why is a social group represented in a particular way? How are the witches portrayed and what influence do they have along the play? In Macbeth, the witches seem to be confusing figures. They are portrayed as dark, eccentric, and strangely amusing creatures. It doesn’t show that they have that much importance early on, but after finishing the play and comprehending, we see that the witches have done a lot.
We can deduce that the “weird sisters” specifically implant ideas in Macbeth’s head, which later influence him by giving him all types of information that eventually affect his way of handling guilt, and other emotions that put him on the edge of sanity. The witches know that Macbeth will be bad, it is not enounced why, but it is put in head that he is. This example shows the fact that the witches do not have the role of Macbeth’s sanity, but do as Macbeth’s bad influences.
The witches wish to receive complete attention from Macbeth, we can see that they use ways to accomplish this, as when the Witches tell him that he will be Thane of Cawdor, and then King. Here they feed the secret desire he had shared only with Lady Macbeth. With this knowledge, Macbeth’s character changed slowly from good to evil. This shows the fact that the witches know what is Macbeths dark desire. By them knowing this we see the fact that they don’t just have some understanding into Macbeths inner knowing, but we also get the fact that they have an interest in Macbeth, shown by giving him information that will trigger his ambition.
The fact of these characters being witches foreshadows the idea of this play containing other supernatural things, which we the reader come across later on in the play. In Act four, Macbeth decided that he was going to visit the witches again. It was here that Macbeth was given three other prophecies. The first one warned Macbeth of Macduff. The second apparition stated that any man born of woman could not kill Macbeth. The third apparition said that Macbeth would not die until Birnam Woods moves to Dunsinane Hill.
When Macbeth got back to his castle, he was announced that Macduff had fled the kingdom. Fearing treachery, Macbeth ordered Macduff’s family to be killed. Both Lady Macduff and her son were murdered. In England, Macduff found Malcolm and convinced him to combine forces with him to destroy Macbeth. Malcolm as a result of fear for a possible betray from Macduff, tested him. In the end, they decided that it was time to visit Macbeth. In Act five, Lady Macbeth’s sleepwalking spoke of their plan to murder King Duncan. The doctor and nurse who looked after her witnessed everything.
Soon in the act, Lady Macbeth was announced dead. In this Act, all of the prophecies of the witches were once again taking into action. Macduff and his army came with branches from Birnam Woods symbolizing the coming of the woods to Dunsinane. After battle it finally came down to Macbeth and Macduff. Macbeth told Macduff that he did not want to fight since men born from women could not kill him, which is when Macduff then revealed to Macbeth that he was ripped from his mother’s womb and that he could kill him. Macbeth did not give up and decided to fight.
He fought against destiny and he could not control it. The three weird Sisters are the start of the gender confusion which is seen throughout the play between Lady Macbeth and Macbeth. As Banquo approaches these witches, he cannot determine whether they are men or women. They possess all of the qualities women can be attributed for, although this confusion comes from the fact that they have beards upon their faces. “What are these, So withered, and so wild in their attire, That look not like th' in habitants o' th' earth And yet are on 't?
Or are you aught That man may question? You seem to understand Me By each at once her choppy finger laying Upon her skinny lips. You should be women, And yet your beards forbid me to interpret That you are so. ” (I, iii 40-49) At the start of this play, Lady Macbeth is obviously the person in charge of their family. Upon hearing the news of Macbeth's prophecy told by the three Weird Sisters she immediately begins planning King Duncan's death. Macbeth is viewed as inferior and compared to his manly wife.
Lastly, King Macbeth's conversation with the three murderers he chose to do the task of getting rid of Banquo and Fleance strongly shows the suggestion of confused gender roles. Macbeth clearly asks them if they are men. All of these examples clearly prove the suggestion of confused gender roles that will be seen throughout this play. Again, his naivety towards the witches predictions makes him believe that the throne is truly meant for him, and therefore these horrible imaginings of what he must do, can all be due to the witches' influence, and not from the true nature of the Macbeth.
Enter Lady Macbeth, whose evil ambition contorts that of her husband forcing him to join her in the evil world she has created for herself. Her efforts are so big that she even begs the spirits to dehumanize her and practically depersonalize her, which makes her seem as a fourth weird sister. However, in the beginning, through Macbeth's openness to his wife in his letter concerning the witches' predictions, it is apparent that they once had a friendly relationship. He trusts her, another quality of innocence, and this trust contributes to his downfall.
Macbeth's love for Lady Macbeth caused him to feel the need to prove his manhood, which eventually led to his downfall. After he proved he was a man by killing Duncan, he felt he had a lot of power to do whatever he wanted. All that he had done eventually lead to the death of his love, Lady Macbeth, which was the original reason he felt the need to prove himself. Through the development of his character, Macbeth turned from an innocent person to an evil person. His ambition, strong belief in the witches, ended him with his life, and caused many people to lose their lives. Word Count: 1028