Hamlet is a Shakespearean play about a distraught prince who comes home to Denmark at the news of his father’s death. Once he finds out that his uncle Claudius has married his mother and become king himself, Hamlet suspects foul play. When his father 's ghost comes back to tell him of Claudius’s sins, he is asked to murder Claudius for revenge, but he isn’t sure if he can do it. Some scholars, researchers, and casual readers would argue that this drives Hamlet mad by burdening him with decision. Others would say that after he accepts his father 's plea for vengeance, that he uses this cloak of madness as a disguise so Claudius cannot see his murderous intentions. As many researchers know there is much evidence for both his sanity, and his madness. But which is true?
The play Hamlet is based on a tragedy. Hamlet, the prince of Denmark, has recently lost his father. His father, who is also named Hamlet, was murdered. Hamlet Sr’s brother, Claudius, is now crowned King and Gertrude, Hamlet Jr’s mother is now forced to marry Claudius. Hamlet Sr. comes back as a ghost and reveals to Hamlet that his own brother murdered him to be crowned King. Hamlet cannot think about anything else besides seeking revenge. Has the death of Hamlet’s father caused him to go insane? No, he is faking his insanity.
Since the early times, people have discussed whether those among them are truly sane or not. During the Shakespearian Era, nobody actually understood who was insane and those who were merely more eccentric than most. One of the most debated plays of all time is Shakespeare’s Hamlet. Many professors and scholars have analyzed and questioned Hamlet’s sanity. Hamlet displays the characteristics of sanity throughout the play.
Having your father die is bad enough, but to have your mother marry your uncle, within a few weeks of your father’s death? Then to see the ghost of your dead father. That would drive anyone a little insane, but maybe not to the extent that everyone thought Hamlet was acting. Hamlet is torn between acting sane and letting everyone else see him as insane.
Often revered for their emotional complexities, William Shakespeare’s tragic characters display various signs of mental illness. Sylvia Morris notes “Hamlet contains Shakespeare’s most fully-developed study of mental illness, and has always intrigued commentators on the play.” (“Shakespeare’s Minds Diseased: Mental Illness and its Treatment”). When looking at the play, one can infer that Shakespeare makes the relationship between sanity and insanity undistinguishable from one another. At the beginning of the play, Hamlet is melancholic and in a state of grief, which is not out of the ordinary because he is still mourning the loss of his father. After all, Hamlet was home from college and was growing into a nobleman.
A decision is the thought process of choosing between two or more outcomes that may or may not have a great impact. When thoroughly pondered, living life is fundamentally based on making the best decisions. Whether or not they are great or small decision making is critical. Often times, it is the smallest decisions one can make that impact the even bigger decisions later to come. Starting from the time people wake up in the morning, the will be surrounded by the most basic decisions until they go to sleep that night. Decisions such as whether or not they will wake up and go to work or choose to stay in bed all day. They also must make the decision to brush their teeth and decide what they are going to eat for breakfast. Of course not every
There are many examples of times where Hamlet seems truly insane. We have the time when he is talking with Polonius in the castle, after the King, the Queen, and Polonius were discussing the love letter that Hamlet wrote to Ophelia. Hamlet walks in reading a book, and Polonius asks
Your father has just passed away and your best friend is off to college. To make matters worse your mother remarries extremely fast to your uncle. In the midst of all this, you find yourself lost and and confused. Just like Hamlet was in his soliloquy to be or not to be. Hamlet’s father's ghost appears and ask to avenge his death. Hamlet is torn between killing his uncle or not because it is a sin. Dealing with all this, Hamlet contemplates suicide. Hamlet's choice of diction reveals his tone of uncertainty toward life and death.
There are many reasons as to why readers debate Hamlet’s madness. There are plenty of examples of Hamlet appearing mad, but there are just as many examples of Hamlet appearing sane, even intelligent. Hamlet is even aware of his madness, which can be seen in the quote, “What I have done that might your nature, honor, and exception roughly awake, I here proclaim was madness… It ‘t be so, Hamlet is of the faction that is wronged; His madness is poor Hamlet’s enemy” (273). Hamlet is clearly aware of his own madness, but this does not necessarily invoke his sanity. Hamlet still appears insane,
One of the most discussed topics of the Hamlet is whether Hamlet is insane or if he was just pretending the whole time. When the play first began Hamlet did not seem crazy but more depressed and suicidal after his father’s death, he did not begin to act crazy until learning about his father’s murder.”How strange or odd soe’er I bear myself, to put an antic disposition on...”, here Hamlet tells Horatio that he will start to act crazy but for them to just ignore it. After this when Hamlet only acts mad around thoses who he does not trust but when
Hamlet only acted insane in front of the king and his chairmen. In other times, he acted completely normal. This is because to get revenge for the death of his father, he needs to buy time distracting King Claudius so that he can kill him. He admits to Rosencrantz and Guildenstern that he is “but mad north-north-west. When the wind is southerly I know a hawk from a handsaw. (II.ii.376-377) Hamlet explains to them that he is only mad when he needs to be, but when the time is right, he can pull it together and be sane. Not only is he faking his madness but he also tells people that it isn’t real.
Hamlet is a tragedy play written by William Shakespeare. It is a play that involves numerous deaths. Hamlet is the main character in the play and he is depicted as an insane person. Hamlet faked his madness so as to confuse Claudius and his assistants in order to find the truth about the death of his father. He acted strange when he was around the king and his attendants and this is evident when he tells his friend Guildenstem that "his uncle-father and aunt-mother are deceived" (Shakespeare). In addition, when they enter the court party, Hamlet tells Horatio that "I must be idle," meaning he is trying to feign his madness. He also confesses to his mother that "I essentially am not in madness, but mad in craft" (Shakespeare). For Hamlet, he had to pretend to be mad in order to plan and execute his revenge against Claudia. Hamlet’s madness played an important role in the play because he later on became insane after he had feigned his insanity. It is obvious that Hamlet had a troubled mind in the play because he was torn on what to do in order to avenge his father’s death. He was torn between whether he was following his father’s wish or the wish of the ghost that appeared to him. This made him insane because, he spent his time worrying about his father’s death revenge and this affected his state of mind. Hamlet became insane because
In William Shakespeare’s play Hamlet, the main character Hamlet, appears to be insane, but his mistrust for his uncle and desire for revenge drives him “To put on an antic disposition on— / That you, at such times seeing me, never shall,” (I.v.181). He succeeds in convincing almost everyone around him that he is truly a mad man whose only cure is execution; however, he is enigmatic and ambiguous. By having an appearance of insanity and madness, Hamlet is able to use it to his advantage to achieve his own purpose of ridding his father’s murderer. As the Prince of Denmark, he is more obsessed with flushing out Claudius’s guilt and shame into the open to move forth with revenge than affairs with the son of their past enemy,
Insanity is an idea that has been examined for a long time in numerous mediums such as films, music, plays, and even works of literature. William Shakespeare’s “Hamlet” is no exception to that rule. Hamlet is one of Shakespeare’s most complex characters, and many scholars have been debating for centuries whether or not Hamlet is truly insane, or whether there is a particular reason for his odd behavior. In Shakespeare’s Hamlet, Hamlet merely pretends to be mad but in reality is sane.
Throughout the play, Hamlet claims to be feigning madness, but his portrayal of a madman is so intense and so convincing that many readers believe that Hamlet actually slips into insanity at certain moments in the play. Do you think this is true, or is Hamlet merely playacting insanity? What evidence can you cite for either claim?