I would say that Shakespeare portrays the women through the witches in a very negative manner. The witches know what is going to happen and they set Macbeth on the course of self-destruction through reaching his desire for wealth and fame as the king. They also do this to his wife, who is almost more effected by the premonitions that the witches offer than Macbeth himself. Further, at that time, the use of witches could be very scary for the audience, because witches were heathens and heretics. Shakespeare's use of them, especially with the negative connotations and the active attempts to destroy a person's life should be seen as very negative and destructive.