Appearance vs. Reality – Comparative Essay

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17 December 2021

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It is all about Looking Good: A Comparison between The Role of Appearance vs. Reality In Macbeth and Frankenstein. Macbeth is likely one of the works of playwright William Shakespeare and it is thought of certainly one of his most powerful tragedies. It tells the story of a great warrior, Macbeth, who turns bad due to ambition and greed. It is a classic tale of biting multiple can chew. A few centuries later, an author named Mary Shelley wrote a gothic novel, Frankenstein, a few young scientist named Victor Frankenstein who creates a being and abandons it.

The creature tries to be accepted by both society and his creator. Although these two texts are of various genres and eras, with Shakespeare’s play displaying sturdy themes of ambition and corruption and Shelley’s novel displaying themes of justice, madness and the elegant, both authors use the theme of look vs. reality. They use this to show how human judgment relies solely on appearances, how an individual can change due to this judgment and the way look plays a role in figuring out one’s place in society.

It is human nature to evaluate others on their outward seems. People rely mostly on their visual senses because the strongest level of judgment. For example, within the play Macbeth, Macbeth and his wife deceive the king with their actions and words to make him really feel welcome whereas they are really planning his homicide. (Macbeth I. v). They know that individuals choose on look and determine to make use of it to their benefit.

They act how they need individuals to see them, as loyal subjects of the king versus deceitful, cunning and ambitious folks which was what they really have been. As mentioned by Lady Macbeth, “to [deceive] the time, seem like the time.” (Macbeth I. v.70-71).

As imaginative and prescient is the primary sense of man, the basis of human judgment is the shape, color or texture of the overall outward appearance. This determines if one thing is sweet or unhealthy. In Frankenstein, Victor Frankenstein’s creation had yellow skin, watery eyes and straight black lips. He was not what was considered lovely (Shelley, 58). The creature appeared ugly and vile, and ugly and vile is not thought of good so it was judged as bad. Eventually, look catches up with actuality and an individual may change or turn out to be what others suppose they’re due to how they appear.

The judgment dished out by folks could be harmful to both the individual being judged and those doing the judging. It can lead to one building up different emotions inside of them. In Macbeth’s case, it led to overconfidence. He began out good; he was a courageous and loyal warrior for his country (Macbeth I. ii.30-45). Then he dedicated a homicide to fulfill his ambition to turn into king (II. ii) and he got away with it as a end result of no one may guess from the way he acts the unhealthy intentions he has or the crime he has committed. He goes on killing and still no can tell as a end result of everyone retains judging primarily based on what they see on the surface. Macbeth reaches a point where he decides to let “the very firstlings of [his] coronary heart be the very firstlings of [his] hand” (IV. i.161-162).

By this time, Macbeth has turned into a tyrant and that is harmful to each him and the people of Scotland. Likewise, the judgment dished out for Frankenstein’s creation had a detrimental effect. He was initially compassionate and thoughtful till his naïve view of people was destroyed by the unjust cruelty he faced (“Frankenstein- The Theme of Appearance.” 1). The creature was good however was never given the prospect to a lot as communicate before he was turned away due to the best way he appeared (Shelley, 108). Eventually, he becomes threatening and malicious because of the hurtful remedy he needed to bear (Shelley 148). Wrong judgment can have an effect, as proven in each Macbeth and the creature’s state of affairs. The one distinction is that Macbeth was already ambitious however obtained worse while within the creature’s case, he completely turned around and went from good to bad. In each cases, each individual’s place in society was affected.

People are ranked into classes in society. It creates a social hierarchy where everybody knows their place and who they should affiliate with. There are ways to discover out this and look performs a job. For instance, if there was no predetermined idea of how good issues ought to look and as a substitute morals, intelligence and compassion was emphasised more than one’s outward appearance, Frankenstein’s creature would never have suffered isolation because of his unattractiveness (“Frankenstein- The Theme of Appearance.” 1).

His place in society is at the very bottom because he has nobody else who’s willing to be associated with him and no one else who is like him. In Macbeth’s case, he was aiming for the best rank; Kingship. In his time, a king is taken into account closest to God and due to this fact the best place in social hierarchy. Macbeth kills the king to become king and because nobody judged him as capable of committing such an act, however as a substitute judged him on how he gave the impression to be a loyal subject of the king, he attained the very best position in society.

The theme of issues not at all times being as they should be has been used throughout the history of literature. This is shown by Shakespeare and Shelley who wrote in completely different contexts and centuries. They show how judging primarily based on appearances can impact the person, how the visual sense is man’s strongest sense so judgment is instinctively based mostly on appearances and how the means in which one appears places them in their place in society. The prejudice of looking good meaning being good and looking bad which means being dangerous has been around for some time and will probably be around for as long as people are in a position to see.

Works Cited.
“Frankenstein – Theme of Appearance.” 1999. Web. 10 Jan. 2013. Shakespeare, William. Macbeth. 2nd ed. Ken Roy. Toronto: Nelson, 2001. Print. Shelley, Mary. Frankenstein. 1818. New York: Penguin, 1992. Print.

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StudyScroll. (2021). Appearance vs. Reality – Comparative Essay [Online]. Available at: [Accessed: 30 September, 2023]

"Appearance vs. Reality – Comparative Essay" StudyScroll, Dec 17, 2021. Accessed Sep 30, 2023.

"Appearance vs. Reality – Comparative Essay" StudyScroll, Dec 17, 2021.

"Appearance vs. Reality – Comparative Essay" StudyScroll, 17-Dec-2021. [Online]. Available: [Accessed: 30-Sep-2023]

StudyScroll. (2021). Appearance vs. Reality – Comparative Essay. [Online]. Available at: [Accessed: 30-Sep-2023]

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