Macbeth Corruption of Power

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The drive for power appears to be a deep-seated aspect of human nature. It is likely related to the survival instinct –both to stay alive and to procreate. In prehistoric times physical strength would have dictated a man’s status in his society with the resulting benefits of ensuring priority with food supplies and choice of female partners. Macbeth demonstrates that when this urge is enacted, moral reasoning is often swamped by the desire for power. It also shows that having some power is not enough in that it generally creates desire for more power. Lord Acton theorized in 1887 “Power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely” which displays the nature power has to corrupt and outlines once one has a large amount of power they are liable to additional corruption. Once one has power the need to protect that power is created resulting in the inability to enjoy and use power positively but brings forth paranoid, fearful and defensive position in attempt to maintain the one’s power.. It is through the characterization of Macbeth that Shakespeare has enabled the reader to explore the tendency power has to corrupt one absolutely when driven by an emergence of underlying primitive urges, unconstrained by acceptable moral conduct. Written by William Shakespeare in the 1600’s, Macbeth illustrates the ability power has to corrupt and provides a complex understanding of the human race and their obsession for power. It depicts the downfall of Macbeth in his quest to hold the ultimate position of power in society, the King. It is prophesied by three witches that Macbeth will become Thane of Cawdor and eventually become the King "All hail, Macbeth, that shalt be king hereafter," the third and final hag moans (1.3.-.). After hearing these prophecies, he begins to ponder the power that he would have in being the King of Scotland. He defies his original
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