In Shakespeare's Macbeth, how does Macduff achieve self-fulfillment?

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Doug Stuva eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In Shakespeare's Macbeth, Macduff suspects Macbeth of treason almost immediately once Duncan's body is discovered, because Macbeth kills the only two possible witnesses to the assassination before anyone has a chance to question them.  Macduff then chooses not to attend Macbeth's coronation.  Later in the play Macduff travels to England to determine whether or not Malcolm is a man Macduff can trust and a man capable of and worthy of leading Scotland.  While Macduff is in England, however, Macbeth's henchmen kill Macduff's wife and son at Macduff's castle.  At this point, Macduff's mission becomes more than political.  It becomes personal.  He must achieve revenge for his family as well as his king.  If you're thinking in terms of Macduff's self-fulfillment, it must come when Macduff kills Macbeth and walks on stage with Macbeth's head.

coachingcorner eNotes educator| Certified Educator

In the play 'Macbeth' by William Shakespeare, it appears at the end as if Macduff is totally fulfilled, both in terms of prophecy and personally, by the ability to display the dead Macbeth's head. Because of all that has happened to him, his country and his family it would seem that he now has much to feel gratified about - although nothing can bring back the dead. However, looking further into the Scots future, there is more at stake than Macduff's fulfilment alone. Malcolm's victory is not everything - it may temporarily bring back order, civilization and a sense of peaceful justice to Scotland, but  other warring chieftains of the tribes are still there. There is still the possibilty that Scotland will be ravaged in two by struggles for power and land. Macduff's own fulfilment may not extend to Scotland's.