Dysfunctional Relationships In Hamlet

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In the tragedy of William Shakespeare’s Hamlet, the dysfunctional relationships amongst family members is emphasized through the use of reoccurring parallelism between the conflicts that occur in Polonius’ family and the royal family’s conflicts. For instance, the lack of trust that Polonius and Claudius have for their sons leads them both to commission spies to strategically find out information about them. For instance, Polonius asks Reynaldo to inquire on the behaviour of his son, Laertes, by spreading false rumours to his acquaintances, in order to see if any of them counters those false claims. He informs him that through doing this, “your bait of falsehood takes this carp of truth / And thus do we of wisdom and of reach / With windlasses…show more content…
Here, Claudius deceitfully makes it seem that he is concerned for Hamlet. However, in reality, he has an ulterior motive for power, and does his utmost to perpetuate his influence. Therefore, he wants to ensure that Hamlet’s melancholy and unusual behaviour is not from his ambition or desire to inherit the throne, or anything else that may cause him harm. Clearly, Claudius is suspicious of Hamlet, and uses the spies as a means to determine whether he is a threat. The fact that Hamlet does not fall into this trickery later on in the scene suggests that Claudius is going to have to go to greater lengths to find out what is troubling Hamlet. Furthermore, Hamlet’s antique disposition is clearly not deceiving Claudius yet, which may mean that the bitter tension between them is only going to heighten further. Also, Hamlet may be reluctant to act on his revenge, as he may believe that by slowly executing his plans, Claudius may admit to his crime or manifest his guilt when he plans to re-enact his father’s

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