Gertrude Gender Roles In Hamlet

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Gender roles play a major part in this play as they are negatively portrayed through massive tragedies and events, some of these being the family dynamic between Ophelia,her father, and her brother, the grieving of the death of both King Hamlet and Polonius, and the weak opinions and morals of Gertude. Shakespeare used characterization of Ophelia and Gertrude to show his view of women’s place in society. The insulting representation of the feminine mindset encouraged traditional beliefs that exist even today.
Starting off with the family relationship between Ophelia and her kin, they portrayed a very traditional dynamic.This being that Ophelia was so naive and foolish that she fell in love with Hamlet, and her big brother Laertes and her …show more content…

Both Ophelia and Hamlet have a grieving period through the story of their fathers’ deaths. While Hamlet is grieving his father’s death for most of the story, he keeps his thoughts to himself and instead of openly speaking about his grief, he just gives readers sullen soliloquies. Ophelia dealt with her grief by embracing her emotions and letting them run freely through songs and speeches. While this touches slightly on the topic of how men and women manage their mental health, this also leads to how surrounding people reacted to their grieving processes. Even though Hamlet was just as torn up about his father’s death as Ophelia was about her father’s death, Ophelia ended up getting institutionalized and deemed crazy while Hamlet walked freely. Hamlet became a paranoid and revenge ridden man due to his grief and this was somewhat known within the main characters, yet no one tried to lock him up like they did Ophelia. This is a prime example of how little faith people had in women and the mistreatment that stemmed from …show more content…

Hamlet consistently referenced his mother as a symbol of all women describing them as unfaithful. An example of this being, “God gives you one face, but you paint another on top of it.(3.1.145-146)”. This gives a clear telling of how Hamlet perceives all women based on his mother’s actions. In addition to this, while speaking privately with Hamlet, Gertrude says, “I feel too dead to breathe a word of what you’ve told me(3.4.203-205)”. This is Gertrude promising not to tell anyone about Hamlet killing Polonius and calling out Claudius, yet she immediately runs to tell everything to her husband. Gertrude’s character had no set beliefs and was consistently tossed in different directions by the men in the story. She was used by both Claudius and Hamlet to help prove their own agendas. This is a clear example of Shakespeare implying that women in this society were used to help the men and purely support their ideas rather than standing for what they really

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