Hamlet Rhetorical Analysis Essay

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In one of the most famous soliloquies in English literature, Hamlet contemplates the ultimate question of life and death when he says, "To be or not to be, that is the question." Hamlet's internal conflict is whether it is nobler to suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune or to take arms against a sea of troubles and, by opposing, end them. His burdens are the overwhelming grief he feels after the death of his father, the betrayal of his mother's hasty remarriage to his uncle, and his sense of duty to avenge his father's murder by murdering the new king, Claudius. Hamlet is torn between his desire for revenge and his fear of the consequences of taking action. He is also struggling with the existential question of whether life is …show more content…

With a somber, introspective tone and a minimalist set design, Burton emphasized the weight of the speech's philosophical concerns, conveying a sense of profound introspection and contemplation. Through his measured delivery and precise enunciation, Burton highlighted the rhetorical aspects of the text, drawing attention to the intricacies of the language and the complex ideas at its core. His approach offered a more traditional, contemplative reading of the soliloquy, which emphasized the intellectual and emotional struggles at the heart of Hamlet's dilemma, making it one of the most iconic performances of Shakespeare's text to …show more content…

Hawke's delivery captured the emotional and psychological turmoil of Hamlet's internal struggle, highlighting the personal and intimate nature of his dilemma. The use of visual props such as a mirror and a camcorder contributed to the sense of self-reflection and self-doubt that underlies the speech. The setting of modern-day New York City provided a relatable backdrop for teenage viewers, who could connect with Hamlet's sense of disillusionment and anxiety about the future. Hawke's portrayal of emotion was intense and raw, drawing the viewer into Hamlet's inner turmoil. The actions taken by Hawke, such as looking at himself in the mirror and using the camcorder to film himself, added depth and complexity to the character, revealing the various facets of his psyche. Camera angles were used to emphasize a feeling of detachment and fragmentation, underscoring the sense of isolation and dislocation that Hamlet experiences. The dilemma being contemplated was presented in a way that was relatable to a teenage audience, dealing with ideas such as identity, alienation, and the search for meaning in a confusing and uncertain world. Overall, I appreciated Hawke’s portrayal of the "to be or not to be" soliloquy because it is more relatable to themes

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