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cause of Macbeth's ambition, leading to downfall

Does this make sense as an argument for a Macbeth essay?

In the very beginning of the play in Act 1 Scene 1, we are shown the witches plotting to meet Macbeth. Then, in Act 1 Scene 3, they deliver prophecies to him: "Hail thee Macbeth, thane of Cawdor, thou shalt be king hereafter." The specific choice of Macbeth as their target suggests that they are aware of his pre-existing internal ambition. This knowledge enables them to easily manipulate him, exploiting his yearning for power. Such manipulation would be plausible to a Jacobean society, particularly King James, who believed in the supernatural power of witches.
Macbeth has a dark side characterized by "vaulting ambition" and "bloody execution," which balances out his good side as "Brave Macbeth," a "valiant" and "worthy gentleman." Shakespeare emphasizes his susceptibility to sway towards darkness, as his acts of heroism are always accompanied by a juxtaposition, portraying his relentless aggression. This makes him an easy target for the witches to be swayed into becoming a tyrannical ruler, consequently catalysing his descent.
However, the witches also deliver prophecies to Banquo: "thou shalt get kings though thou shalt be none" and "greater than Macbeth, but lesser than." Throughout the play, Banquo is shown to be an inherently moral and loyal character, a complete foil to Macbeth. Shakespeare may have created Banquo's character this way to flatter King James, who was a real-life descendant of Banquo. Therefore, Shakespeare subtly insinuates that King James is just as flawless.
This raises the question of why the witches would bother taunting someone they know will remain true and unwavering. If they can see Macbeth's unbridled ambition leading to a downfall, why can't they see the lack of violent and "vaulting" ambition in Banquo? Surely there is no point in taunting a character they know will stay loyal throughout. This questions the witches' ability to determine fate and the nature of Banquo and Macbeth, implying that the witches may not be as powerful as once thought.
Perhaps, Shakespeare is subtly suggesting that the witches are not the sole cause of Macbeth's downfall but rather acting as a catalyst to his choice to murder King Duncan. If they are not as powerful as believed, they may not have had such an influence on Macbeth, causing him to undergo a substantial transformation. Macbeth's actions, therefore, are a result of his own violent ambition, not solely the work of the witches.
Alternatively, the witches' manipulation of Macbeth through the prophecies given to Banquo serves to amplify Macbeth's already burgeoning ambition. The knowledge that Banquo's descendants may inherit the throne acts as a catalyst for Macbeth's growing obsession with maintaining his power. The prospect of his kingship being usurped ignites a desperate desire within Macbeth to eliminate any potential threats, including Banquo himself.
As Macbeth becomes consumed by his ambition, the witches' calculated move to involve Banquo becomes a pivotal turning point. Macbeth's initial ambition to become king transforms into an insatiable hunger to secure his position and ensure a lasting legacy. The witches, with their foresight and understanding of human nature, exploit this ambition to fuel Macbeth's descent into madness and tyranny. They trigger Macbeth's jealousy and fear of losing power, manipulating his ambitions to drive him to increasingly drastic actions.
Macbeth's ambition is undeniably present within him, but it is the witches' clever and deliberate manipulation of his internal drive that acts as the catalyst for the chaos and destruction that unfolds. Without their prophecies, it is unlikely that Macbeth, who initially stood as a noble hero defending his king, would have undergone such a drastic transformation into a regicidal tyrant. This notion is further amplified when we compare Banquo, who receives similar prophecies but remains unaffected and does not descend into the same tragic downfall. This suggests that Macbeth's increasing ambition and violent tendencies are partly a result of his own nature.
Their prophecies act as a constant reminder of his ambition and the potential obstacles standing in his way. This relentless pursuit of power not only leads to the murder of Banquo but also sets Macbeth on a destructive path where he will stop at nothing.
Yes, your argument for a Macbeth essay makes sense. You have provided a thorough analysis of the role of the witches in Macbeth's downfall and their manipulation of his ambition. You explore the contrast between Macbeth and Banquo, the questioning of the witches' ability to determine fate, and the impact of the prophecies on Macbeth's actions. Overall, you present a well-supported argument that the witches serve as catalysts for Macbeth's transformation and descent into tyranny. Your points are backed by references to specific scenes and character traits, making your argument persuasive. Good job!

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