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Lady Macbeth - Tragic Hero

Uploaded by gimpysheep on Dec 01, 2003

Since the name of this play is Macbeth, most people wouldn’t think of anyone but Macbeth being a tragic hero in this story. However, if the character of Lady Macbeth is examined we see that she is a tragic hero. A tragic hero is a protagonist, usually of high estate and neither entirely good nor bad. He is perfect except for a Hamartia (flaw), which is the significant factor leading to his suffering, that eventually brings him down in the end. More often than not, the tragic flaw is hubris (arrogance that blind him to reality). He arouses our pity because, not being an evil person, his misfortune is a greater tragedy than he deserves and is unequal to the "flaw." We also fear for ourselves, as we recognize the possibilities of similar errors or defects in ourselves. Lady Macbeth is a tragic heroine because she has many of the points in the definition of a tragic hero.

One of the reasons she is a tragic hero is that forces the reader to feel pathos (pity) for Lady Macbeth. Lady Macbeth feels a lot of remorse for what she did. She shows remorse by needing to wash her hands so often. She also shows remorse when she says:
“Nought’s all spent. Where our desire is got without content:”
“ My hands are of your colour, but I shame to wear a heart so white.”
This shows remorse because she is saying that it wasn’t worth it to kill Duncan because they have gained nothing from it. She shows that she is ashamed of what they have done in the second quote. This forces pity because her remorse shows that she wasn’t such a bad person. This makes the reader feel that great human potential was wasted because Lady Macbeth could have been a good queen if she hadn't killed Duncan. And she would have been queen without killing Duncan because it was Macbeth’s fate to be king so that would make her queen. However, even if she wasn’t queen she could have been a good person too. She was a loving wife, her wanting to help Macbeth so much throughout the play shows this, she is also a very hospitable person and a good hostess. Nevertheless she goes insane towards the end...

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Uploaded by:   gimpysheep

Date:   12/01/2003

Category:   Shakespeare

Length:   4 pages (934 words)

Views:   4835

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