Sleep Deprivation

Topics: Macbeth, Sleep deprivation, Sleep Pages: 4 (1381 words) Published: April 12, 2008
According to the National Sleep Foundation, sixty percent of Americans have sleep deprivation, an outcome of today’s advanced technology. Improvements of the technology and realization of the imaginations offer people more choices to expend their limited amount of time: for example, cell phones, which are among the greatest inventions in the twenty-first century, let people listen to music, take pictures, and even watch TV shows. Because of those innumerable entertainment options, they leave their own health as the last concern, meaning that sleep is in their least priority, without knowing how much a lack of sleep influences their life. The play Macbeth, a tragedy about the rise and fall of the protagonist, Macbeth, reveals the significance of sleep. William Shakespeare frequently uses a vivid imagery to enable readers and audiences to understand the plot and illustrate the meanings of the characters’ actions and conversations. Each image found in the play serves a different purpose, yet most focus on the attributes of the characters. For instance, clothing reflects the status of the characters while light and darkness emphasize good and evil. In contrast, sleep concentrates on patterns in their lives. Sleep is a necessity of life for soothing and cleansing exhausted souls and consciences; thus, a lack of sleep reveals abnormalities. Throughout the play, the absence of sleep disrupts the normal life cycle of the characters, especially Macbeth and Lady Macbeth, by tormenting their souls, evoking their guilt, and taking away their freedom. After Macbeth and Lady Macbeth murder Duncan, they confront their inability to sleep and loss of innocence that incessantly pester them. As Macbeth regrets and fears his own potential for evil deeds, he defines sleep: “the innocent sleep, / … great nature's second course, / Chief nourisher in life's feast” (II. ii. 37-41). In Macbeth’s mind, sleep replenishes both body and soul and frees him momentarily from work and worries....
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