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Shakespeare's Hamlet as a Tragedy.

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  • Essay length: 1152 words
  • Submitted: 19/06/2006
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University Degree Hamlet

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Shakespeare's Hamlet as a Tragedy

Hamlet, the story of a young prince who seeks to revenge his father's death by killing his uncle, Claudius, is one of the most favorite and complex Shakespearean tragedies. Hamlet is unsettled by Claudius taking over the throne and his mother's hasty remarriage but does nothing except verbalize this discontent. Encountering the ghost of his dead father, who tells Hamlet that he was murdered by Claudius, gives reason to Hamlet to seek revenge; however, Hamlet continually postpones his actions and, this being his tragic flaw, leads to his downfall.

Shakespeare's Hamlet is the classic example of a tragedy as defined by A.C. Bradley. Bradley says that a Shakespearean tragedy is the story of a hero who encounters significant suffering. The hero, a man of high status and an "exceptional being" who inspires "fear or calamity" in others, often compares himself or his situation to happier times and struggles with an internal dilemma. The tragic hero brings about his own downfall through his actions, or his tragic flaw, and his destruction affects those around him. Shakespeare also occasionally uses abnormal conditions of the mind, such as insanity, and includes the supernatural,

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