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How effectively does Shakespeare use the language of Hamlets soliloquies to help the reader to get an insight into his character?

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Introduction

Q: How effectively does Shakespeare use the language of Hamlets soliloquies to help the reader to get an insight into his character? Ans: No other writer in the world is so quotable or so often quoted as Shakespeare is. He expressed his deep thoughts and feelings in words of great beauty and power. In the technical skills of rhythm, sound, image and metaphor he remains the greatest of craftsmen. His range is immense. It extends from funny puns to lofty eloquence, from the speech of common men to the language of philosophers. His plays rose to fame and appreciation due to his extraordinary insight into human psychology. His ability to distinguish man in all forms and character is extraordinary. This magnificent ability is shown through all his plays. Some of Shakespeare's famous tragic plays include Hamlet, Othello, Romeo and Juliet, Julius Caesar and Macbeth which not only captures our interest and wonder but teach us valuable lessons in life as well. Shakespeare's magic speech and fancy can be felt but not described. No one else has his wide variety, his warmth, his clear-cut vision of evil and his high regard for heroism. He believed that man could overcome the evil in himself. He once said, "we are mixtures of good and evil." His characters have an astonishing reality. Like real people, they can be great and yet foolish, bad and yet likable, good and yet faulty. Shakespeare's people are painted larger than life, hence making them complex and exciting. They have superhuman energy and grandeur, and stand for mankind in its greatest passions and powers, for good or for evil. William Shakespeare started writing tragedies because he thought the tragic plots used by other English writers lacked artistic purpose and form. His tragedies revolve around a person of social or intellectual status whose life is ruined by great mistake or tragic flaw. According to Elizabethan philosophy there was a natural order in the universe ordained by God. ...read more.

Middle

In his first soliloquy he expressed his feelings about life, but here we see Hamlet as he lashes at himself or his flaws. His enthusiasm for the Hecuba speech, leads him to examining his present state of mind. Impressed by the striking passion of actor, "This player here...could force his soul so to his own conceit..." , Hamlet feels inadequate and ashamed for his delay in avenging his fathers death, "Why what an ass am I!". He lashes out against himself for being a coward and hates himself for not taking any action when he has real proof to take revenge- "must like a whore unpack my heart with words and fall a cursing like a very drab". He admits to his flaws and condemns himself for it as he compares himself to a whore with no dignity. His ability to speak out words and inability to act infuriates him. This effective use of comparison is very appropriate to his feelings and situation, thus proving Shakespeare appropriate use of simile. Shakespeare here uses the technique of introspection to examine Hamlets own mind. He asks himself a string of questions that take him further into examining his own mind but also stirs up new questions for him to answer, making him even more confused- "Am I a coward? Who calls me villain...Why does me this?...". Out of frustration he blames Claudius for all that is encircling his mind. He condemns him to eternal hell and damns him- "Bloody, bawdy villain! Remorseless, treacherous, lecherous, kindles villain!". He uses a list of expressive adjectives to condemn Claudius. Shakespeare always used a string a strong adjectives to stress on an issue and to bring out a strong and emphatic image. It helps the reader better understand the character and his/her feelings. This was a very effective device used by Shakespeare at that time. At the end of the soliloquy Hamlet reveals his plan to confirm Claudius was the murderer thus portraying the importance of this soliloquy. ...read more.

Conclusion

Towards the end he sounds like Leartes who is hot-blooded but at the same time he senses he will not do so- "O, form this time forth, my thoughts be bloody, or be nothing worth!". Although in this soliloquy Hamlet tells us that he is ready to take action, we know he doesn't have the real will and determination. Hamlet urges us to think about many things including family relationships. It is a family drama. Brother, sister, brother and brother, father and son and so on are the dynamics that I believe generates so much of the play's electricity. Then we have friendship and friendships betrayed; the nature of duty: to one's country, to those in power, to oneself, to God, to truth. And there, perhaps, is the reason why a four- hundred- years- worn text in Elizabethan English continues to excite people from so many different cultures and ideological positions. In this play Shakespeare identifies and dramatizes in colorful, memorable and provocative ways, why; where we come from, where we have got to and where we will go next. The focus shifts continually between gauging the sureness of Shakespeare's craft and responding to the complex, serious and beautiful game he has set in motion between a text and an ever-renewing audience. As you can see the list of Shakespeare's genius is limitless. The dramatic death of Hamlet left a lasting impression on my mind personally. The sole reason for his death was due to his tragic flaw "PROCRASTINATION". Hamlet had the chance to avenge his father but instead wasted his chance on speculating and wondering. In the end not only he died, but so did the rest of his family and loved ones. Procrastination is also a serious issue in today's world. Shakespeare makes this point clear to everyone young or old. What I learnt from the play Hamlet was to never leave anything for tomorrow what can be done today, thus making this play a brilliant portrayal of both education and knowledge HAMLET BY WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE ENGLISH COURSE WORK Done By : Edris Mafi Class: SR.4.F 1 ...read more.

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