The witches in Act 1 utilize plenty of equivocation fallacy in order to involve confusion with their words of choice. There words are different and convey an opposite meaning to create a deceiving idea. This strategy seems to remain prevalent as it develops an unusual sense of language selection.
A clear example is when the witch concludes to Banquo, “Lesser than Macbeth, and greater…not so happy, yet much happier.
..thou shall begets kings, thou be none”(1.3).Their word choice is misleading generating an effect that contains multiplicity meanings.
Utilizing a vague term in more than a particular sense, consequently, leads to misdirecting. Subsequently by the use of this technique Macbeth is led to become greedy with the strange bearded woman’s prophecies. The witches interpretation of the prophecies is taken to a literal extent and because of this he transforms into an ambiguous greedy man. The aside, “And nothing is but what is not”(1.
3), demonstrates Macbeth’s confusion and resembles a startled mind after the witches prophecies are revealed. Equivocation can be analyzed in this quote as the thoughts stir up his mind and complicates his intentions. The witches in the beginning of Act 1 spell out, “Fair is foul and foul is fair”(1.3), the appearance of this motif is written to deceive since it is translated to foul and evil. Most important, the witches play an important purpose in creating the atmosphere and from this quote it reveals that they will encourage Macbeth.
The meaning of the words is reversed foul will become fair and everything that is fair will become foul. The idea is not clearly stated, therefore it does not provide a concrete implication and disorientates the character from actually understanding. Macbeth states, “so foul and fair a day I have not seen”(1.3), which is ironic how he uses the same words as the witches in order to indicate the supernatural evil force of darkness. The two direct words used have a distinct meaning, yet the words are unrelated with one another.
Furthermore,equivocation fallacy is still used today, especially by president Donald Trump, who declares in an interview,”I had a tremendous victory…I think the most ever or just about the most ever.”Equivocation fallacy was used intentionally by him to assert more than one statement.
An ambiguous expression is exerted to enhance his verbal strategy in declaring a statement that is unclear due to his disorienting words. A different context is applied to advance his technique that is beneficial for him to exercise in these speeches to gain audience.