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

Hamlet Essay DRAFT

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Hamlet Essay DRAFT Examine the function of the main soliloquies in the play. Comment on their impact on the audience, how they reveal the character of hamlet and how they are involved in the structure of the play. "Hamlet" is a tragedy written by William Shakespeare in around 1601 when Queen Elizabeth the first was on the throne. In the play we see the royal court of Denmark becoming more and more corrupt with ghosts, murder, madness and incest, culminating in the highest death toll in any of Shakespeare's plays. The lead character of Hamlet is an intellectual whose aim in the play is to avenge his father's death by killing his uncle, the king. However his tendency to think too much and inability to carry out his actions gets in the way of him bringing the king to justice, and this hesitancy is a major recurring theme in the play. At the time of Hamlet first being performed, the royal family of England would have been similar to the celebrities of today, and the public of the time would have loved any scandals or gossip involving royalty. This made Hamlet very popular with the audience watching the plays, and even though this particular royal family was that of Denmark, the public ...read more.

Middle

This self-loathing continues in other soliloquies. Then at the end of the soliloquy Hamlet gives the audience a taste of things to come and shows his intentions. He has devised a plan to verify whether or not Claudius is guilty of the murder. He will show the royal court a play that depicts the exact murder of Hamlet's father, and watch Claudius' reaction. He tells the audience "The play's the thing Wherein I'll catch the conscience of the king". The next of Hamlet's soliloquies is one of the most famous passages in the play. In the soliloquy Hamlet shows self-loathing, and melancholy, and is contemplating suicide. "To be, or not to be, that is the question". The opening line shows hamlet contemplating suicide, showing the audience the extent of his depression. Then by saying, "to suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune... And by opposing end them" he is saying that if you can't suffer them you must end your troubles with suicide. He then shows his doubts about killing himself when he says, "aye, there's the rub". He is saying that the impediment to suicide is that you don't know "what dreams may come when we have shuffled off this mortal coil". ...read more.

Conclusion

At the end of the final soliloquy Hamlet decides once and for all that his thoughts "be bloody or be nothing worth". He has come to the conclusion that his thoughts are worth nothing unless they are thoughts of murderous revenge. In conclusion I have enjoyed studying Hamlet's soliloquies. They shed light on different aspects of Hamlet's character, and help convey his feelings to the audience. The soliloquies are especially effective as they help the audience keep up with the plot of the play and give them an insight into how the main character is feeling. The soliloquies are important in this particular play because they let us see Hamlet's thoughts. Hamlet is an intellectual rather than a man of action, so it is crucial that we are let inside Hamlets head to understand what he is thinking. If it weren't for the soliloquies, the audience would have no idea what hamlet's intentions were when he was commissioning the play, or when he was contemplating suicide, or when he was putting off the murder of Claudius those numerous times! To understand the plot of hamlet you must first understand Hamlet's character, and that is exactly what his soliloquies enable us to do. ...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. The Dramatic Function of Ophelia in Shakespeare's 'Hamlet'.

    Polonius makes decisions for his daughter without consideration of her feelings for Hamlet. His doubting of Hamlet's intentions is perhaps more telling of his own disposition than of Hamlet's; I think he judges Hamlet by his own standards. Polonius' contempt for Hamlet is shown through Ophelia.

  2. Critical review of 'Hamlet'

    how accusations of being mad, three murders and a trip to England has caused him to see life for what it is. Hamlet appears less cowardly and more certain of himself, and maybe his destiny, when he asserts himself as 'Hamlet the Dane'.

  1. With special reference to the main soliloquies, trace the development of Hamlet's character in ...

    show that they really care about something and show passion towards it, when he cannot. He says this because he does not weep for his father and he has not got the passion to seek revenge for his father's death.

  2. In the third soliloquy, Hamlet admits to the audience he is a coward;

    The sense here is of strong disgust with himself at his use of words, rather than action. Note also the ending, which reintroduces the idea of acting and action in "the play's the thing..." Theme Analysis The true nature of Hamlet's madness has been an issue of debate for scholars over the centuries.

  1. An exploration of the ways in whichShakespeare presents Hamlet's changing thoughts and feelings in ...

    conscience, however the play is also an excuse for further delay as Hamlet feels reserve and guilt for the task he needs to undertake. In Hamlet's third soliloquy, 'To be or not to be', Shakespeare gives a clear picture of Hamlet's sadness.

  2. A consideration of the extent to which, in Hamlet's soliloquies, Hamlet is presented by ...

    Hamlet's first soliloquy occurs later in this scene. Hamlet has been asked to remain in Denmark against his wishes by his mother and stepfather and the audience learns of the extent of Hamlet's despair as he contemplates suicide. Although this soliloquy shows anger and rage, it demonstrates no proceedings on Hamlet's part.

  1. In Act two, everyone notices a change in Hamlet because he has began his ...

    Perhaps Shakespere, in his writings, created his own ideologies and sense of propriety. One could say that Polonius was simply in the wrong place at the wrong time. In late twentieth century American culture the term "involuntary manslaughter" could

  2. Criticism on Hamlet

    A scheme might easily have been formed, to kill Hamlet with the dagger, and Laertes with the bowl. The poet is accused of having shewn little regard to poetical justice, and may be charged with equal neglect of poetical probability.

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