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What three points can be derived from the thesis statement that Macbeth's fate, his desires, and intellectual views lead to his downfall in Shakespeare's Macbeth?

Shakespeare plays puppet master with the character Macbeth by dangling his fate in front of him, but at the same time it is Macbeth's own desire and intellectual views that lead him into mental illness and finally to suffer his foreshadowed fate.

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Your first point could explore how Macbeth finds out about his prophesied fate. You could show how the witches tell him in act I that he is Thane of Cawdor before Duncan bestows that title on him. To do so, find a quote to support how getting the title soon after speaking with the witches convinces him that the witches really can foretell the future.

Your second point could show that Macbeth freely chooses to murder Duncan: this "fate" is hardly forced on him. You could look at the soliloquy in Act I where he changes his mind and decides not to kill the king, and then discuss how Lady Macbeth soon afterwards goads him into it by appealing to his masculinity with grandiose statements about dashing her baby's brains out. His changing his mind shows he had a choice, and his response to his wife reveals his own deep desire for the throne.

Finally, while Macbeth does not exactly suffer from mental illness, you could illustrate the way his conscience hardens. This drives the people away from his tyranny, and they desert his armies in droves, which seals his fate. For this, you could chose quotes in which Malcolm's virtues are contrasted to Macbeth's tyrannies. For an example of Macbeth's hardened conscience, you could look at the cold-blooded way he has Macduff's wife and children killed.

In sum, the witches dangle his fate before Macbeth in a believable way, he chooses to act on it from his own free will, and his increasingly hardened conscience turns him into a tyrant, which insures his overthrow.

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The first point you can explore is the statement that Macbeth's fate is "dangling in front of him." From this, you can discuss the witches' initial prophecies that he would become thane of Cawdor and "king hereafter." Describe Macbeth's responses to these and contrast them with those of Banquo when they also divulge his future. Do these predictions act as a spur or are they definite markers of the fates of both? It is interesting to note that Macbeth himself muses:

If chance will have me king, why, chance may crown me,
Without my stir.

In this, he clearly suggests that if it were his destiny to be king, it would be so without any action from him. The question is, therefore, whether Macbeth had already contemplated doing his malicious deed and that the prediction is only an encouragement for this choice or whether the prognostications were the seed for this idea. In both instances, free will is involved.

The first point you can explore is the statement that Macbeth's fate is "dangling in front of him." From this, you can discuss the witches' initial prophecies that he would become thane of Cawdor and "king hereafter." Describe Macbeth's responses to these and contrast them with those of Banquo when they also divulge his future. Do these predictions act as a spur, or are they definite markers of the fates of both? It is interesting to note that Macbeth himself muses:

If chance will have me king, why, chance may crown me,
Without my stir.

In this, he clearly suggests that if it were his destiny to be king, it would be so without any action from him. The question is, therefore, whether Macbeth already contemplated doing his malicious deed and that the prediction is only an encouragement for this choice, or whether the prognostications were the seed for this idea. In both instances, free will is involved.

The above links to Macbeth's own desire, which is the second point to be considered. The fact that he sees the predictions as "happy prologues to the swelling act/ Of the imperial theme" is a clear indication that his mind had dwelt on the idea of becoming king. The question is, therefore, how did he previously think he would achieve this? His extremely negative response to Duncan naming Malcolm prince of Cumberland suggests that he believed the king would name him his successor and not his son. It is probably this circumstance which gave Macbeth the volition to search the shorter way and satisfy his "vaulting ambition."

On an intellectual level, Macbeth considered all the positives and negatives of his pernicious plot, as indicated in his soliloquy in Act l, Scene 7. He eventually concluded that he and his wife "will proceed no further in this business." It is his wife's insistence, however, that persuades him to undertake this malicious deed. It is not fate that made the decision for him; he had a choice.

Finally, you can consider Macbeth's "foreshadowed fate" and his response to these predictions. The weird sisters told him of the circumstances leading to his defeat and eventual death by using paradox and equivocation. When they told him that he will not be defeated until Birnam wood come to Dunsinane, he chose to read their prediction literally. When he was told that "none of woman born shall harm Macbeth," he did the same and believed he was invincible. Even though he acted on their warning to be wary of the thane of Fife, Macduff, by sending assassins to have his family killed, Macbeth did not realize their warning about "none of woman born" referred to Macduff as well. 

It was this gullibility that sealed his doom. Macbeth, in the final analysis, was a victim of his own ambition, greed, malice, and incredibly blind faith in the evil sisters and their auguries.

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