Hurt Minds is a commentary by Derek Russel Davis about Macbeth and the physiological side of the murders in the play. One of Macbeth's first crises is his future role as a leader is unclear. He is already a loyal thane and brute warrior but in his mind he wants more power. The witches spark this idea when they address him as "King hereafter" (I.iii.50). Macbeth understands the danger the "instruments of darkness" are capable of but his inner desire to be king overshadows the danger. This is especially true when Macbeth learns Duncan has named Malcolm successor to the throne.
The thought of becoming King changes many relationships in Macbeth's life. Banquo was like a brother to Macbeth but after the meeting with the witches he can talk to him free heartily. While Banquo is skeptic of the witches fortune, it was just enough light to fuel Macbeth's fire. This fire would rage in Lady Macbeth as well. Not much was known about her behavior before she received the letter from Macbeth detailing the "witches' promising greatness." When she learns that Duncan is visiting, she decides to drop all her womanly feelings and fill the gap with ruthlessness. This ruthlessness is illustrated when she taunts Macbeth. The fact that Macbeth has not fathered children and Lady Macbeth has "given suck" makes Macbeth more sensitive to her jeering to commit the murder. Macbeth's courage in battle is an over-computation for his insecurities that Lady Macbeth exposes. Killing Duncan would prove to his wife he is a man and better their relationship.
Immediately after the murder, Macbeth suffers psychologically. Macbeth becomes very jumpy and every noise worries him. He also shows disorganization in his behavior when he brings back the daggers from the murder. He was supposed to plant the bloody daggers on the guards but after he stabbed Duncan he became discombobulated. Scenes of remembrance from the murder haunt his dreams every night and strip Macbeth of his sleep....
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