Anna- The hysteria of Lady Macbeth

Coriat, Isador, The hysteria of Lady Macbeth, Four seas Co.1920, 10 August 2010, Web, 9 June 2016, Print.

The article talks about the psychoanalysis of Lady Macbeth. It talks about her sleep walking scene which is basically not mentioned in Holinshed therefore; it is Shakespeare’s creative imagination. Isador says that the character had hysterical somnambulism. She is not the victim of a blind fate or  destiny rather she is affected by a mental disease. It is clear from the plat that she had several somnambulistic attacks. Her acting out of all these complexes is based upon reminiscence of her past repressed memories. Her first complex is demonstrated based on King Duncan’s murder. Her continual washing of the hands is a reminiscence of her earlier remark after Duncan’s murder. Her next complex is demonstrated when she tells Macbeth that Banquo is buried and that he cannot come out of his grave.

According to some genealogists Lady Macbeth and King Duncan’s wife were siblings or cousins. It is said that Lady Macbeth was jealous of her since Duncan’s wife had a stronger claim to the throne than Lady Macbeth. She is a powerful presence in the play. There is a conflict between femininity and masculinity in her character. She suppresses her instincts towards compassion, motherhood, fragility all of which are associated with femininity. She was ruthless, ambitious and single minded in pursuit of power. This conflict colours the entire drama as such and sheds light on gender based pre-conceptions from Shakespeare’s England to the present.

 

 

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