The Journey of Deception Essay Example

  • Category: Society, Sociology,
  • Pages: 4
  • Words: 908
  • Published: 22 August 2020
  • Copied: 200


The concept of ‘Deception’ is, and always has been a way of life for the human race. From Fictitious novels to the ancient Egyptian era and modern media the use of deception is scattered throughout our history bringing several positive and negative connotations for this term. Deceit can appear in many forms, through lies, equivocations, concealments, exaggerations and understatements. Examples of deceit are displayed throughout the play Macbeth written by William Shakespeare, The character Severus Snape from the famous Harry Potter Novels, modern media and personal experiences throughout my childhood.  

Malicious vs Benign Deception

Lying in itself has become natural, almost routine for the majority of society. We all lie even if we are incredibly honest individuals. It is estimated that the average person lies 30 times an hour extending from small to drastic deception. For example, on how many occasions has someone asked you about your day and you have responded with ‘good thanks’ even if that's not the whole truth? People lie and deceit others for a variety of reasons.

It is used as a form of protection from consequence or confrontation, for personal gain, to conceal the truth, fear, manipulation, pride. Deceit is often associated with negative connotations, When a person successfully lies it often drives one to continue their deceptions, It may seem harmless at first but like an addiction, you’ll soon find yourself entangled and trapped deeper into the deception than you could have ever imagined. This could potentially lead to a loss of dignity and relationships. Shakespeares Macbeth meticulously illustrates this concept through the character of Lady Macbeth.

She may have appeared sweet and innocent, the ideal image of a woman during the 11th century. but underneath her facade, she was harbouring an evil that had the capability to transform her husband's nature, conceal the truth from a nation, lead individuals to become sceptical, inflate her own paranoia and lead to her ultimate demise. She became too deeply entrenched in the addiction that is deception that she couldn’t escape the coffin that she built for herself.   

However,  many negative connotations are framed around the word ‘deceit’ it can also bring about several positive ones as well, if done in the correct manner. One of my most beloved pieces of literature is the ever-so-famous, fictitious world of Harry Potter. I used to despise Severus Snape upon my first reading of the novel, but as I gravitated toward the end my eyes were opened to a kindhearted, brave and self-less individual that many should aspire to.

Yes, his facade was a form of major deceit, but deceit that resulted in the ultimate victory of the wizarding world. The take-away from the novel is that while the art of deceit is not specifically encouraged if done with the correct purpose could possibly result in a positive outcome. Many of the adult figures who play significant roles in a child's life employ exaggerations and encouraging words of deceit in order to aid with the child's development, self-esteem or success.

Deceit in Modern Society 

Under all the propaganda, campaigns and advertisements deceit and deception is the main brand of Instagram, snap chat, facebook and a plethora of other online websites/social media. Modern media utilises deceit as a form of marketing to exaggerate or equivocate images or statements to make a product seem more desirable or intriguing. Deception creates controversy, drama and tension all of which is apart of a perfect recipe for a News Article. Individuals crave drama and tension providing more and more money to entertainment companies. The news only creates content that they believe with encapture an audience and draw them into the hysteria even if it is at the cost of the whole truth. The media Sensationalises the minute facts rather than revealing the whole truth.

“We live in a dirty and dangerous world. There are some things the general public does not need to know and shouldn't. I believe democracy flourishes when the government can take legitimate steps to keep its secrets and when the press can decide whether to print what it knows” - Katharine Graham, former owner of the Washington Post 

Deception in the modern era can also emerge in the simplest of forms as the famous saying tells ‘A little white lie never hurt nobody’ or does it? Parents and children alike take advantage of the many forms of deception in order to conceal, reveal or gain an objective. The deception itself can be as innocent as the tale of the legendary Tooth Fairy or as serious as lying about smashing your parent's car. However, deception no matter how small or large can still have a paramount impact upon an individual.

Personally, I myself have experienced deception in various forms such as lies from my siblings, exaggerations from my friends and concealments by my parents/other significant adults. One of the most profound concealments I have encountered was the fictitious tale of St Nicholas or what is more commonly known in today's modern era as ‘Santa Claus’. A lie innocent enough that brings joy but one that also dampens and shifts the whole tone of the Christmas experience when the deceit is revealed. 

In Summary

The Ambiguous nature of deception will always be an inherent part of society. Humans will continue to master both malicious and benign deception in various forms and severities. Macbeth, Harry Potter, the news and modern media while all being exceeding dissimilar share a commonality, they expose a raw, vulnerable part of human nature that reminds us as individuals that we are not perfect. Deception in itself while being controversial has shaped and moulded our history, novels and entertainment today. Without deceit, the modern world would be a very different place, without negative deceit we would not have had the opportunity to grow and develop as a culture and ultimately without positive deception, the world may be a slightly darker and less magical place.