The Downfall of Macbeth

Pointing Fingers: Lady Macbeth

There are many factors that caused Macbeth's eventual demise, the biggest one being his wife, Lady Macbeth. While the witches did put the ideas of ruling and being king into Macbeth's head, Lady Macbeth was the one who pressured and guilted him into killing Duncan in the first place. Without Lady Macbeth, Macbeth probably wouldn't have ever killed Duncan; "Which thou esteem'st the ornament of life, and live a coward in thine own esteem, letting 'I dare not' wait upon 'I would'" (1.7.47-49). Lady Macbeth calls Macbeth a coward for not killing Duncan. She continues by saying that if she promised to kill her nonexistent child, she would to keep that promise. Unlike Macbeth at first who promised to kill Duncan, but shortly backed out before Lady Macbeth effectively convinced him to kill Duncan. The role Lady Macbeth essentially has is being the metaphorical devil on Macbeth's shoulder in the beginning of the play. Her influence is what ultimately started Macbeth's downward spiral into madness, obsession, and too much ambition.
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Asides, Foreshadowing, and Comic Relief in Macbeth

In Act 1, scene 4 we learn that Malcolm was named Prince of Cumberland and Macbeth recognizes this a problem and an obstacle that he will have to overcome. In this aside we get a clearer understanding of what is going through Macbeth's head and what he is thinking about doing: "The Prince of Cumberland! That is a step on which I must fall down, or else o'erleap, for in my way it lies" (1.4.55-58). In this example of foreshadowing, Macbeth is just named Thane of Cawdor, and the last man to hold that title was a traitor. Macbeth eventually becomes a traitor and that started with him being named Thane of Cawdor. "No more that thane of Cawdor shall deceive our bosom interest: go pronounce his present death, and with his former title greet Macbeth" (1.2.73-75). There are very few parts in Macbeth that has comic relief, and when a porter gets drunk and makes a joke about sexual performance when intoxicated to Macduff: "Marry, sir, nose-painting, sleep, and urine. Lechery, sir, it provokes, and unprovokes: it provokes the desire, but it takes away the performance" (2.3.27-29).

Similarities between Lady Macbeth and Queen Levana

In the book Cinder by Marissa Meyer, the main villain, Queen Levana, has many similarities that remind me of Lady Macbeth. Queen Levana manipulates just about anybody she can to get what she wants, to be Queen of New Beijing while ruling Luna as well. She manipulates her soon to be husband into what she wants him to say, think, and do. Levana is also not above killing innocent people to get what she wants. This is like Lady Macbeth because she manipulated Macbeth into killing Duncan, and she didn't care about taking that life (indirectly) although she did eventually go crazy from guilt: "What, will these hands ne'er be clean?" (5.1.43) I have not finished the Lunar Chronicles yet so maybe Queen Levana goes crazy as well, it seems likely considering her character.
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Macbeth and the Sound of Madness

The Sound of Madness by Shinedown resembles Macbeth mainly because of these few lines "so paranoid, watch your back... another loose canon, gone bi-polar, slipped down, couldn't get much lower... the darkest hour never comes in the night" (Shinedown 0:21-0:24, 0:34-0:39, 1:05). Macbeth got super paranoid near the end of the play and was very ready to kill people that got in his way, and in my opinion Macbeth's darkest hour was when he sent murderers after his 'best friend' and didn't even spend anytime mourning his late wife. The only acknowledgment he gave was saying he would rather have had her die at a more convenient time for him.
Shinedown - Sound Of Madness [OFFICIAL MUSIC VIDEO]