The Corrupting Force of Power in William Shakespeare’s Play Macbeth Macbeth

June 7, 2022 by Essay Writer

Often unchecked power has a negative effect on people and could cause corruption leading to one’s own destruction. Macbeth by William Shakespear, is a malevolent play depicting the downfall of Macbeth and Lady Macbeth who were corrupted by power. In the beginning of the play, corrupting force of power is revealed when three weird sisters (witches) give Macbeth three prophecies “thane of Glamis!, thane of Cawdor!, king”. (Act 1 scene 3, lines 49-51) This shows Macbeth as he is starting to become corrupted by power because after he is told the prophecies he is thinking about killing the king, when Lady Macbeth is told of this she decides that the king must be dealt with. To accomplish this, Lady Macbeth decides that they would invite King Dunacn to dinner at theis castle and murder him in the night. In conclusion, Macbeth and Lady Macbeth show corruption because they are planning on killing a king to get the power they desire.

As the play continues and the lot becomes more complex, corrupting force of power is further developed when Macbeth becomes paranoid of his best friend Banquo and hires murderers to kill him. “Every minute of his being thrusts against my life”. (Act 3, scene 1, lines 117) This quote shows that Macbeth has become paranoid because of the corrupting force of power and killed his best friend to ensure that he will remain in power. However, this had a negative effect on Macbeth because the ghost of Banquo appears before him, causing him to shout and the people around him to stare in confusion while also making a fool out of himself and Lady Macbeth. Therefore Macbeth is being affected negatively by the unchecked power and has become paranoid, resulting in the loss of his greatest friend Banquo.

As the play comes to an end, the corrupting force of power is refined by Macbeth being out of control and killing all of Macduff’s family. “Castle of Macduff I will surprise, His wife, his babes”. This shows that Macbeth speaking about the murder of Macduffs family because of the negitive effect of the corrupting force of power. This quote also shows that Macbeth has become ruthless and will kill women and children to stay in power and ensure that he will remain king. In the end William Shakespears malevolent play Macbeth, revals how corrupting force of power could cause one to become capable of killing innocent people to remain in power. This is shown in Macbeth because of the crimes he commited such as murder and treason because of unchecked power. Over all William Shapespear’s malevolent play, Macbeth, revals corrupting force of power through complex characters and plot interactions. In Macbeth, it is shown that if power is unchecked it could lead to one’s own destruction, readers could learn to not let power go to their head or it may lead to negative consequences.


Read more