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

Is Hamlet Really Insane?

Extracts from this document...


Hamlet?s Play-acting Madness Is a person really ever mad? Or are their minds so sane it almost seems unreal? The human mind works in many ways; it is full of many wonders and abilities not common to men himself. Shakespeare?s Hamlet portrays the main character Hamlet to be an insane individual in certain parts of the play. When his father?s ghost appears enforcing Hamlet to avenge his death against his uncle Claudius, he brings forth a plan to make it seem like he has gone mad liberating him from public questioning and giving him time to seek revenge. However, it is questioned that within all the plotting and pretending to be insane, Hamlet really does indeed go mad. Hamlet?s focus to seek revenge makes him a good actor in the sense that he really does make others believe he has gone mad, however he is completely sane throughout the entire play. His intelligence to convince others he is crazy, his will to keep going and his obsession with getting revenge on Claudius makes Hamlet such a convincing character, it triggers the thought of his actual state. ...read more.


Will power is what keeps the mind going and focused on one?s goal. In Hamlet the only goal the protagonist has is to kill the current king; his uncle Claudius. Throughout the play Hamlet sets out to find proof that Claudius did indeed poison his father. He sets various traps through out the scenes to see if he can get Claudius to confess. For example he arranges a play to be performed for the king and queen?s entertainment, further more he adds a scene in the play, re-enacting the murder. However after his attempt to kill Claudius backfires, he decides to give up and go back to England. Along the way he runs into Fortinbras (prince of Norway) who is on his way to Denmark to fight over a small plot of land that isn?t worth much. ?Go to their graves like beds, fight for a plot/ Whereon the numbers cannot try the cause, / Which is not tomb enough and continent/ To hide the slain? O, from this time forth/ My thoughts be bloody or be nothing worth!? (4.4.64-68).This brings back Hamlet?s will to keep going and seek his revenge. ...read more.


This does not benefit him all that much, however it does persuade him to fight Laertes, kill Claudius and die himself in the end, showing his final part of his plan and his dying as a tragic hero. Hamlet?s ?so called? insanity is a product of his obsession making him seem mad. However he is very much sane, manipulating the scenario to get his way in the end and showing his skilled acting. In conclusion, Hamlet is not insane. He knows exactly what he is doing the whole time and manages to succeed in getting revenge on Claudius for his father?s murder. His intelligence helps him set up a plan to start his revenge, makes it seem like he is mad yet shows that he is not to certain people whom he trusts (Horatio, Gertrude). He has the will to keep proceeding in his plan until the end, knowing he can possibly die, and seeing the results of his obsession and regretting certain decisions he may have made; For example, turning down Ophelia?s love. An insane person cannot think the way Hamlet does, making decisions and preceding his goals calmly and with clarity. Hamlet play-acts his insanity throughout the play making him a good actor and being completely sane. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE 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 GCSE Hamlet essays

  1. Hamlet & Madness

    To die, to sleep; To sleep, perchance to dream-ay, there's the rub: For in that sleep of death what dreams may come. (3.1.56-66) In other soliloquies Hamlet explores the faults of passion and how emotions can be faked as well as his own character flaws such as his inability to take action.

  2. Hamlet: How does Shakespeare build up to the climax in the final scene?

    He has developed into a character more scheming than before. In Act 3 Scene 4, Hamlet becomes enraged and Gertrude fears he might murder her ("What wilt thou do? Thou wilt not murder me?") This shows that Hamlet is now more open than he was at the beginning about showing his emotions, and his emotion at the moment is fury.

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