Is Lady Macbeth’s character stronger than Macbeth’s – Discuss
Lady Macbeth is an ambitious and ruthless woman who desires power and status. She appears stronger and more callous than Macbeth as she manipulates him to assassinate Duncan. However, as the bloodshed continues, her guilty conscience becomes more affected than Macbeth’s. Unlike Macbeth, who grows insensitive to the murders that he has committed, she descends into madness and (apparently) commits suicide as she becomes less capable to withstand the horrors of her crime.
Lady Macbeth’s ambition and ruthlessness is evident when she asks for the spirits to “unsex [her]” so her “manliness” will give her strength to be cruel and perform murder of Duncan without remorse and compassion. Her strength of purpose is in contrast to Macbeth’s “nature” as he is “is too full ‘o the milk of human kindness”1.4 p45” to commit murder. This is confirmed later by Macbeth’s admission that his only motive for the murder of Duncan is his “vaulting ambition” and this not an adequate reason. However, Lady Macbeth convinced him to change his mind by questioning his manhood, ridiculing him, and threatening to withdraw her love for him. With Lady Macbeth’s goading and bullying, Macbeth let his ambition goes unchecked and overcome his moral objection to the murder. [Optional Her ruthlessness also gave her the soundness of mind to plant the murder weapons on Duncan’s guards as Macbeth becomes too incapacitated by guilt to get rid of the incriminating evidence.] Her ruthlessness and her dominance over Macbeth are at its zenith. As Macbeth’s ambition grows bolder, Lady Macbeth’s responsibility and role in the subsequent murders diminishes. She only suggests to Macbeth that Banquo and Fleance are “assailable”, the planning and the execution of the murder, including later Macduff’s family, are Macbeth’s own doing. Subsequent to saving Macbeth from embarrassment at the banquet, where he hallucinates and sees the bloodied ghost...
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