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Comparison of Macbeth and Malcolm as Kings and Leaders of men Shakespeares Macbeth is a politically centered play it dramatizes the contrasted effects of power and authority upon a land It is a play of political figures and ambition of power and authority of order and disorder and of the restoration of peace The central concern of the play is the issue of legitimate and illegitimate kingship Shakespeare concentrates upon succession regicide usurpation and the abuse of power or tyranny The leadership and thereby kingship of Macbeth and Malcolm are evaluated through all of the characters presented on stage All of the characters including witches serve the play in acting to make support or destroy a king This evaluation of kingship extends to all three Kings within the play a victim in Duncan an ambitious tyrant in Macbeth and a steady-handed heroine in Malcolm Shakespeare holds the play to this focus through the simplicity of the plot The dramatized struggle between the dictatorial regime of Macbeth and the more heroic movement led by Malcolm to perform what is seen today as a political shift to the left from right wing is a timeless focal point that allows for comparisons between Shakespeares Macbeth and regional conflicts throughout history The driving force behind Shakespeares Macbeth is the effect of ambition and conscience upon a nation when it occurs at the highest levels of society Macbeths weakness of character is the ambition which clouds his rational thoughts Macbeths lunge for the throne is the result of his great ambition this is the product of his mind alone and not of other characters Ambition is the basic flaw that Macbeth has received from Shakespeare to pave the rest of the play Macbeths vaulting ambition Ivii27 is the substrate awaiting catalysis by other characters to create a great tragedy For the weak-minded Macbeth the only method of mental rationality is to balance ambition with
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