Sexism In Hamlet

937 Words4 Pages
Sexism has prevailed all throughout the world for all of time. Constantly deemed inferior to men, women have filled the position of the second class citizen. Accordingly, many of William Shakespeare’s plays are male dominated and fit this timeless mold. This mold assures that women are merely tools and are nearly never allowed to work for themselves. In Hamlet, Ophelia and Gertrude, fit this idea perfectly. Because of this, Ophelia and Gertrude are no more than tools to explain and progress the male agenda. Men not only assert their power physically, but also mentally over these two women. All throughout the male dominated world of medieval Denmark, women are used to explain men. Ophelia and Gertrude, however, did not exactly sign up for…show more content…
They are not held in high regards by their male counterparts. These men frequently use Ophelia and Gertrude for personal gain, making them the men’s most valuable tool. The majority of the time, the women are used for their personal connections. Hamlet is usually the butt of this force due to his connections with both women, but at some points he joins the game. One such example comes from a conversation with his mother. “O Hamlet, thou hast cleft my heart in twain” (3.4.157). Gertrude says this when Hamlet is trying to convince her of Claudius’s guilt. While Hamlet is not completely successful in his goal to weaken Claudius through Gertrude, he does try. Another of Gertrude’s connections, only this time with Hamlet, is used by Polonius. He states, “Let his queen mother all alone entreat him… and I’ll be placed, so please [the king], in the ear of all their conference” (3.1.185-188). Polonius is using this tactic as a way to prove what he believes to be the cause of Hamlet’s madness. Polonius even uses his own daughter to uncover his version of the truth. So, when Hamlet’s pretend madness is first revealed, Polonius decides to “loose [his] daughter on [Hamlet]. Be [the king] and I behind the arras…” (2.2.163-164) in an effort to convince the king of his understanding towards the
Open Document