"I hold my duty as I hold my soul both to my God and to my gracious king". In what ways does Hamlet challenge this statement then? In what ways does Shakespeare challenge this statement now?
"I hold my duty as I hold my soul both to my God and to my gracious king". In what ways does Hamlet challenge this statement then? In what ways does Shakespeare challenge this statement now? It is clear that Polonius' words in Act 2 Scene 2 epitomize an impression of order and certainty. Shakespeare challenges this statement by using both action and the characters, particularly Hamlet himself. Hamlet's individuality sets him aside from all the other characters as the hero of the play. This is revealed at the beginning of the play when, against the advice of his best friend Horatio, he follows the ghost into the unknown. "Horatio: Be rul'd; you shall not go" This comment from Horatio fully illustrates his whole character; he is a classical thinker and does not believe in encountering anything that would exceed the realms of his experience. When his experience goes against what he "knows" he exclaims; "Horatio: Which might deprive your sovereignty of reason And draw you into madness?" Horatio is Hamlet's best friend and intends to be at the princes side until death do them part. When this unfortunately transpires much more prematurely than he had thought he wishes to drink the rest of the poison from the cup and die with Hamlet. "Horatio: I am more an antique Roman than a Dane. Here's yet some liquor left." On Hamlet's deathbed, he charges Horatio, "To tell my
"Hamlet is ultimately selfish by taking revenge in his own time as he causes much unnecessary death" By referring to at least 2 sequences from the play explain whether you agree with it or not.
"Hamlet is ultimately selfish by taking revenge in his own time as he causes much unnecessary death" By referring to at least 2 sequences from the play explain whether you agree with it or not. Hamlet's procrastination can be seen as his downfall, and to a further extent it can be seen as selfish as it resulted in loss of life. I however strongly disagree with this accusation, as I personally feel that Hamlets procrastination is what makes him what he is and separates him from the standard Revenge Hero an Elizabethan audience would expect. It is through he postponing of events that Hamlet manages to "Know thy self" such to the degree that he can put his conscious at rest. By comparing Hamlet at the beginning to at the end one can see the change in character Hamlet has undergone, this change would not have been possible had he not take time out to console in himself. By examining to sequences this contrast can be clearly see, first one can see the scene after Hamlet's first confrontation with the ghost. Here Hamlet adopts a most different approach from the average Revenge Hero, to begin with Hamlet distrusts the ghost seeing him as a "goblin". A typical Revenge Hero would have not questioned the ghost and have gone half-wittedly to commit the revenge. Hamlet however is very unsure, and this can be seen through his speech, he uses short uncertain phrases "O all you
"It's not Lear's weakness but his strength that makes the story a tragedy." Discuss. I would disagree with the statement above, since we can see from the very beginning of the play, that Lear makes the mistake himself of abdicating his throne to fuel his ego, which eventually results in his downfall. By abdicating his throne, not only is he plunging his family and community into crisis by abandoning his responsibilities, he is also violating God's natural law. In the 18th Century man's task was to obey God's law and maintain his position in the hierarchy, fulfilling his duties. King Lear by giving away his kingdom went against this and violated the natural order. This creates a parallelism between another of Shakespeare's plays, "Macbeth." Macbeth when he becomes king is not a true king, as he is not behaving like God's deputy on earth, and instead he acts like a usurper. Both Lear and Macbeth abdicate their responsibilities, disobeying God's law, which has devastating consequences to the family and country causing disorder and chaos later on in the play. Following this, Lear out of pride and anger begins to banish those around him who genuinely care for him, starting with Cordelia. This is another of Lear's tragic flaws, which prevents him from seeing the true faces of people because his pride and anger overrides his judgement. As we see in this first act, Lear does not
How successful is Hamlet as a play about revenge? Consider both the modern and Elizabethan audience.
How successful is Hamlet as a play about revenge? Consider both the modern and Elizabethan audience. Hamlet as a play about revenge is very successful in the way that it raises many questions about the morality of revenge. Despite the modern day and Elizabethan society having various different beliefs, both types of audience are able to empathise with many of Hamlet's problems. Helen Gardner says, "The Elizabethans thought murder unethical and private revenge sinful." 1 The Elizabethan society was strongly Christian. In their society, God was in highest position, followed by the Monarch, then the other Elizabethan people. This was known as the "Chain of Being". Gardener's statement would certainly be true according to Christian teachings. They believed that a King had been appointed by God, and was therefore the person on Earth closest to God. Any murder is a sin, but murdering a King is a sin of the worst kind and complete blasphemy. This is how many would have viewed Hamlet's revenge. The fact Claudius is King affects opinions concerning him considerably. Claudius himself believes that "There's such divinity doth hedge a king/That treason can but peep to what it would,/Acts little of his will." Ultimately, the fact that Claudius is King will not protect him as he thinks it will. The Elizabethan audience would have shared Claudius's view as they believed in
Why is 'Hamlet' seen as such a unique play even though it is part of the English revenge tradition in drama?
Hamlet Why is 'Hamlet' seen as such a unique play even though it is part of the English revenge tradition in drama? (Literary Tradition) Hamlet is arguably one of the greatest plays of all time and it is said that Hamlet is performed around the world every 5-10 minutes. Initially, Hamlet comes across as a typical revenge play of the Elizabethan times but when looked at in more detail Hamlet is a unique play even though it was part of the English tradition in drama. The Elizabethan audience understood the conventions of revenge tragedy at least as well as we today grasp the complicated rules of spy fiction. Once Hamlet raised the suspicion that he knew that Claudius is a murderer he is in danger of not only being killed by the tyrant but of being damned himself, 'Burned by God in hell!' Hamlet decides not to kill Claudius (Act 3 Scene 3) and by failing to kill Claudius, Hamlet comes off the revenge treadmill and becomes hunted rather than the hunter. Hamlet is seen as a revenge play but it has more than revenge, there are themes and messages running through it all. Hamlet and his fathers' relationship is very important in the play. His brother Claudius; who was having an affair with the Queen; killed King Hamlet when the King was asleep by putting rat poison in his ear. As a result of the King being killed Claudius was crowned king of Denmark. Hamlet
"Antony seems totally dominated by Cleopatra, and as such loses any sympathy or respect we have for him in the play"
"Antony seems totally dominated by Cleopatra, and as such loses any sympathy or respect we have for him in the play". Do you agree/disagree with this statement? I don't agree with this statement as Antony is proven time after time, to have a huge amount of respect from his peers. For example in the opening scene of the play, we are presented with two guards talking of "His goodly eyes......have glowed like plated Mars". This hero worship shows how powerfully Antony's reputation is respected and admired, and it is not just these two guards. The enemy in the form of Pompey recognises Antony's potential to sway the end result of the upcoming battle. He can see that if Antony were to be drawn away from Egypt to help Rome, then his hope of victory would be gone. Another example of Antony's respect is when he is dying and a number of guards stumble across him. He is lying there covered in blood and probably looking rather pathetic, and yet his reputation precedes this and he is referred to as being "the star" that has fallen. Antony asks them to finish the job, but the guards cannot bring themselves to do it. The god Hercules may have been said to have left him, but antonym is still a god to them, and they are not worthy to strike down upon such a figure. Decretas, once a follower of Antony wants to become a traitor and take Antony's sword, to show to Caesar. In doing so,
Agnieszka Zgajewska Fool's language tricks When the Fool enters the stage he seems to be completely free in telling the truth but he does not have a complete immunity from punishment. First proof of it comes when Lear warns him with the whip: LEAR: Take heed sirrah, the whip. (II.4.111) When he goes too far in his impudent commentaries he could be turned away from Lear's household. Who would then stay with Lear and point out the truth to him? Fool has the awareness of that and from the moment of Lear's first warning he is more careful in how he expresses his criticism. He knows how to extricate himself from risky situations and escape an eventual punishment. He starts to use his tricks and verbal shifts which for a while distract Lear's attention and let him continue revealing the truth to his master. When the Fool feels that Lear's patience is running out he masks his comments with his characteristic manner. He immediately changes the form of his speech and finds the way to escape the whipping. He stops himself from another biting remark and in response to Lear's warning he provides less acute answer. More to the point, in dangerous situations " the truth he
HAMLET SOLILOQUY The tragedy of Hamlet, Prince of Denmark, is a novel written by Shakespeare. It was written between 1599 and 1601.. The play was set in Denmark, and describes how Prince Hamlet exacts revenge on his uncle Claudius, who murdered his father, and then goes on to marry the Queen, Hamlets mother, much to the surprise of Prince Hamlet. This marriage confuses Hamlet, who cannot believe what he has witnessed, and makes his mind unstable. Hamlet later has a dream, in which his father appears. In this dream, his father tells him of the way his murder was plotted by his uncle Claudius, so he could become King. His father also tells him, his mum was involved in the plan and murder. His father demands revenge. He demands Hamlet to gain revenge on his father's murder, by killing his uncle. He, however, warns him not to harm his mother. Hamlet is bewildered by this, due to the fact his mother was part of the plot to murder his father. Hamlet's attitude changes dramatically. He is less talkative, and more inquisitive. His behaviour towards Ophelia also changes. He doesn't talk to her, and acts strangely towards her. Her father, Polonius, believes this is due to his love for her. Little does he know he is trying to focus on his father's demand, and get Ophelia away from him. All doubts of Hamlet's strange behaviour are cast to one side, when Polonius informs
Essay One - Question 1 Personal response to Hamlet and its enduring power of Shakespeare's Characterization Shakespeare's characterization of the characters allows the exploration of ideals that are relevant to all human beings regards of context. In "Hamlet" Shakespeare uses the characterization of Hamlet to examine the human quest for answers about death, duty and the opposing forces of moral integrity and the need to avenge his father. This essay will bring characterization to the forefront in response to how it has shaped the play of "Hamlet". A great deal of characterization of Hamlet is presented through the use of soliloquies. In his soliloquies, Hamlet shows his true feelings of dejection and disillusionment. The soliloquy starts with a supposition, "O that this too too sullied flesh would melt, thaw, and resolve itself into a dew". Hamlet is clearly seen as an escapist as he wants to run away from his duties and responsibilities. Here, he again gives the audience the impression that he is aware of his flaw. His wish to commit suicide is expressed clearly, but he knows he can't do so as it goes against the laws of God. "That the Everlasting had not fixed his cannon 'gainst self-slaughter." Life has become a very futile exercise for him, where nothing seems to be holding his interest anymore. It has becomes very colorless and meaningless. We notice all this when he
How does Hamlet's character develop during the play? The character of Hamlet develops in many complex ways throughout the play. Shakespeare develops the character incorporating all the major elements of what has now become to be known as a "revenge play". The main conventions and strict formula of a "revenge play" are all observed in Hamlet. Just as in Hamlet, all the "revenge plays" contain the appearance of a ghost who cries for revenge. The hero must disguise himself in order to obtain the information he needs to justify his acts of revenge. Sometimes the hero employs physical disguise; at other times he feigns madness which threatens to become real. Also, a female character goes mad from excessive grief. The main villain is a scheming politician who has murdered for both lust and power. The hero is forced by some circumstance to delay the consummation of his plot. Finally the act of revenge demands the death of the revenger as well. Hamlet as a character goes through many changes during the play; states of madness, anguish, sorrow and desire for vengeance. In parts of the play he is not able to cope with the stresses and strains that his elusive form of revenge is thrusting upon him. At the beginning of the play, when we first meet Hamlet, we see the first aspect of his character. He is suffering inconsolable grief over the death of his father. We also see that