Indecision In Hamlet

1543 Words7 Pages
In the play Hamlet, by William Shakespeare, the main character is Hamlet, the Prince of Denmark. The play starts just after Hamlet’s father dies. King Hamlet’s ghost appears and tells Hamlet that he was murdered by Hamlet’s uncle, Claudius, the new King of Denmark. This few minute encounter creates many decisions that influence many of the characters in the play. Hamlet’s mind is violently pulled in divergent directions. He’s faced with many different decisions and has chronic indecision, which might be diagnosed as a cognitive symptom of depression by authorities such as the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. He struggles with whether killing Claudius is morally right or not, but he also feels an obligation to avenge his father’s death. On account of his indecision and procrastination, he puts off killing Claudius until the very end of the play, which causes many unintentional deaths and causes a vicious circle of revenge. When King Hamlet’s ghost tells Hamlet that he was murdered by Claudius, Hamlet struggles with the morality of killing Claudius. On one hand, he thinks it may be morally excused because it’s to avenge his father’s death. This is known as an eye for…show more content…
He also says that the first day is the hardest but it gets easier over time. This idea of “assuming a virtue if you do not already have it,” can be explained by more modern psychologist, William James, who said: “If you want a quality, act as if you already had it.” The other advice is from Polonius. Even though Polonius is portrayed as old and bumbling, Hamlet calls him a “tedious old fool,” he gives wise advice to his son Laertes in Act 1, Scene 3. “Give every man thy ear, but few thy voice; [...] Neither a borrower nor a lender be; For loan oft loses both itself and friend. [...] This above all: to thine own self be true.” He tells Laertes to listen more, not to lend or borrow, and to be true to
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