Discuss how madness and mayhem are represented in Macbeth.

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lsumner | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Senior Educator

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In Macbeth, there is madness and mayhem. There is deliberate violence in this play. Macbeth and Lady Macbeth commit violent acts in order to take the throne of Scotland.

First of all, bloody warfare is not strange to Macbeth. He has been a fierce warrior on the battlefield. No doubt, killing King Duncan is second nature to Macbeth. As a soldier, he kills constantly. The madness of his murdering comes into play when he kills King Duncan to take away his throne.

King Duncan has just honored Macbeth, proclaiming him Thane of Cawdor. Macbeth has clearly lost his reasoning in murdering King Duncan. Furthermore, Macbeth kills or has Banquo, his friend, killed. Banquo is a witness to the prophecy given by the three witches. Macbeth fears Banquo will accuse him of murdering King Duncan to take his throne. Again, murder is Macbeth's solution.

Next, Macbeth has Macduff's innocent wife and children killed. The violence just continues. Clearly, Macbeth has gone mad in all of his murderous deeds. He and his wife both are seemingly mad. Macbeth hears voices, and Lady Macbeth cannot wash the bloodstains from her hands.

Ultimately, the madness ends for Lady Macbeth. She takes her own life. In the end, Macduff gets his revenge when he beheads Macbeth and restores order and sanity back to the throne of Scotland.

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