• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Hamlet - review

Extracts from this document...


Hamlet Coursework There were many factors which affected Shakespeare when he wrote Hamlet, one of which was the fashion at the time were all about revenge tragedies, the audience absolutely loved to watch violence. Shakespeare knew that, so most of his plays were in that category. When this play was written in 1601, Shakespeare's father died and also one of his generous patron and friend imprisoned due to the failure of a rebellion led by Lord Essex. Shakespeare himself had also taken part in the plot by authorizing a performance of Richard II on the eve of the events. Essex's followers compared Elizabeth I to Richard and the scene concerning the deposing of the King was to trigger that of the Queen. However, the theatre did not suffer any retaliation when the plot was exposed. From this year onward the tone of Shakespeare's plays became sombre, sad and bitter. This probably affected the way in which Hamlet was written. During the first 2 scenes of the play, Hamlet's father has died. Although he doesn't know exactly how he died but he suspected there was a murder as the quote 'My father's spirit - in arms! All is not well. I doubt some foul play.' showed. To make matters worse, Hamlet's uncle, Claudius immediately managed to marry Queen Gertrude (Hamlet's mother), which has made Hamlet even more angry and bitter. ...read more.


from Hamlet. In here, Shakespeare has chose to compare how different King Hamlet was to King Claudius just like how different was Hamlet to Hercules. This was a very effective way to show the audience because the main idea was set out very clearly in terms of their differences. During the first scene, one of the guard said 'Tis now struck twelve.' A time of night associated with magic and the dead. Shakespeare has chosen this deliberately to increase the suspicion and fear in the audience because on a 16th century stage, there wouldn't be any special/lighting effects as most of the plays were performed during day time. So the only way to tell the audience was to act or say it out. From these, tension was increased for the audience through many short dialogues between the characters and when the guards spoke of something that they couldn't name, a 'thing', 'a dreaded sight' and 'apparition', a sense of gloom and doom was created. On a 20th century, the way of presenting tension would be completely different through the uses of technology and costumes. Actors might be able to perform with sound effects and red/blue stage lightning to help them passing along information to the audience. However, in the Elizabethan times, such technology was available, therefore Shakespeare's only choice was to use short sentences/phrases to create the tension from the dialogues spoken from the actors. ...read more.


Gertrude herself in the play was very much of a confused character due to the relationships between her son and her new husband. The ghost was the primary mover of the play; it was the main reason why Hamlet begins to plot against Claudius. The ghost tells the audience what the play was about and how it should end; this gave the audience a basic idea so the audience doesn't get lost anywhere in the play. The ghost also constantly reminds the audience about the key plot of the play whenever it talks to Hamlet. In conclusion, the first two scenes of Hamlet gave the audience a look into the events, which the play begins from, and the basic plot of the story. An insight into Hamlet's characteristics and feelings/opinions about the speedy marriage of Gertrude and Claudius were also given. The effectiveness of these scenes can perhaps be seen when the main story of the play has started to move in just two scenes and the audience was already interested when a suspicious murder has happened. I think this play from Shakespeare was very successful because it not only showed revenge and violence but had also shown the essence of a human being through the atmospheres of guilt, hatred and regret presented to the audience. These different atmospheres contributed to the different themes in Hamlet. E.g. Hatred inside Hamlet leads to his madness seen by other characters through his actions. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Hamlet section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Hamlet essays

  1. Critical review of 'Hamlet'

    From Hamlet having fooled two people with his act of insanity it provides proof that Hamlet is an excellent actor and could therefore be anyone or anyhow he wants when in certain company throughout the play. This could prove hard to establish Hamlet's character and if any changes are genuine.

  2. Scene by Scene - Hamlet.

    "if this be otherwise." He finishes, "If circumstances lead me [i.e., allow, the actor could say "let"], I will find / Where truth is hid, though it were hid indeed / Within the center [of the earth]." He suggests he and the king hide and watch Ophelia and Hamlet.

  1. Hamlet - Appearance vs. Reality

    about there purpose of the visit: Tis as easy as lying; govern these ventages with you finger and thumb, give it breath with your mouth...Act III As the melodrama continues Hamlet goes with the twins to reclaim money that another state owes Denmark.

  2. Discussing Hamlet.

    normal speech to other characters: "More than kin, a little less kind...Too much in the sun". These puns, or plays on word show elements of ambiguity, that although Hamlet is related to Claudius, "More than kin", he is "less than kind" as he lacks family feeling for Claudius.

  1. Whos there? Theatrical review.

    Another cold, dark night is set just as in scene one. We are now pondering whether Hamlet will be the right person to speak to the Ghost, and the stagecraft increases the drama. When Hamlet first heard of the ghost's appearance he wasn't really shocked, but now that it appears

  2. Hamlet Review

    The set of a wooden surrounding encased the audience and actors to provoke a feeling of being trapped and cannot escape. The genre of the play was tragedy, so the general expectations that the audience wanted to see were death, betrayal and shocking revelations.

  1. Discuss the atmosphere created at the beginning of the play. What is its relevance ...

    Perhaps their secretiveness is due to the fact that if all of Denmark finds out there will be utter chaos and disorder. This in a way is somewhat ironic because in deciding not to confide with King Claudius and other members of the castle, and telling Hamlet, one could say

  2. Criticism on Hamlet

    Man is distinguished from the brute animals in proportion as thought prevails over sense : but in the healthy processes of the mind, a balance is constantly maintained between the impressions from outward [344] objects and the inward operations of the intellect; - for if there be an overbalance in

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work