The Ego And Insane In Shakespeare's Hamlet

1793 Words8 Pages
It is said that events and/or happenings affect a person psychologically. This, in turn, can make said person act a certain way so that they can achieve a short sense of fulfillment. In the twentieth century, Sigmund Freud had an incredibly important idea about the “human psyche” (personality). He concluded that it is made up of more than one aspect and that the psyche was structured into three distinct parts – and, although each develop in different life stages and contain unique features, they all contribute to an individual’s behavior. The three parts include: the ego, superego, and the id. The ego is the part within that is influenced by the outside world and allows us to make decisions. It relies on realistic strategy and reason to satisfy…show more content…
One of these events include the rejection that Ophelia suffers at the hands of Hamlet. While in search for the perfect plot, Hamlet pushes Ophelia away by stating that her “beauty’s power [could] more easily change [her] into a whore” than to turn such a “beautiful girl into a virgin” (3.1.113-115). He continues his rejection by telling her “I used to love you,” (3.1.116) and by insulting her because “wise men know” that in the long run, she’d “cheat on them” (3.1.138-140). When she heard his words she was saddened greatly and was left in a confused stupor. As she is standing there in awe at his words, Ophelia exclaims, “And of all the miserable woman who once enjoyed hearing his sweet, seductive words, I am the most miserable,” (3.1.155-156) proving that she, indeed, felt horrible about the situation she was in. Not only was she mentally affected because of the rejection, she also hated how she knew “what he was before” (3.1.160-161). Furthermore, when her father died, Ophelia spiraled straight into insanity, thus, leading to the action of suicide. Soon after the death of Polonius, Ophelia was seen “talk[ing] about her father…and talk[ing] nonsense,” with a short temper; it was said that she had “been robbed of her sanity” (4.5.4-7, 82-83). When the poor, desolate girl could deal with it no longer, she drowned herself. Unlike his sister though, Laertes preferred to take the route of revenge. His blinding rage allowed only the id of his psyche to be prominent as he sought to kill whoever had murdered his father. Laertes is less idealistic than Hamlet and “is morally inflexible in his devotion to the abstract ideals of justice and honor in avenging his father Polonius” (Lee). This, of course, made the play excited for it provided action that had yet to be seen from other characters. Laertes, thinking that he had killed Polonius,
Open Document