Examples Of Mental Illness In Macbeth

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Paranoid schizophrenia is a mental illness that causes a person to lose touch with reality. Schizophrenics often believe that people are out to cause them harm. Being unable to distinguish appearance vs reality can often make life confusing for them. Confusion often creates some of the most compelling conflicts in literature. Shakespeare uses this confusion in his works such as Macbeth. Throughout the play Macbeth, William Shakespeare uses the confusion between appearance and reality to characterize the downfall of Macbeth. At the beginning of the play, Shakespeare uses the confusion between appearance and reality to characterize the beginning of Macbeth’s downfall. The witches introduce the theme of appearance and reality when the witches announce “Fair is foul, and foul is fair/Hover through the fog and filthy air” (1.1.12-13).…show more content…
Banquo, who is skeptical of the witches, makes a comment about the their beards and questions their gender. This confusion reinforces untrustworthiness because he cannot tell the gender of the witches and he sees these witches as odd and suspicious. Macbeth is first described as a fearless warrior who renders worthy service to his king; however Macbeth hides his dark thoughts. Disguising a plan to kill Duncan, Lady Macbeth lectures Macbeth about not revealing his intentions and tells him to pretend to be a flower, but be the serpent underneath it. Macbeth attempts to be duplicitous, compared to a flower, but he is not strong at being a secretive serpent. Lady Macbeth plants the idea of murdering Duncan into Macbeth’s head and insults him in order for him to prove her wrong through murder. A flower is beautiful and has an innocent nature, but a serpent is known as a

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