In the play, Shakespeare portrays Hamlet as a dynamic character to cause a mental state conundrum among the audience and explore themes of suicide, spying, friendship, madness, love, hate and humour. Furthermore, by utilising literary devices such as soliloquy, characterisation,
Some other characters, such as Claudius, Gertrude, Ophelia, and others, have struggles of their own, as shown by their various dialogue, soliloquies, thoughts, and actions. Characters that face mental and emotional turmoil are common in works by Shakespeare, and Hamlet is no exception. Hamlet struggles with his own mental health and sorrows throughout the play. He constantly battles his own sanity, often questioning it himself. When his father dies, Hamlet is incredibly grief-stricken and returns to Denmark from Germany to attend the funeral.
This is what Hamlet suffers through in the play. He is depressed and suicidal as indicated in his infamous quote, “To be, or not to be: that is the question.” (3.1.57). However, while many may choose to carry on after the death of a loved one, Hamlet chose to hold on to his sorrow and pretended to be mad so he can know the truth behind his father’s death. Hamlet’s tragic life is not the cause for his madness. Hamlet drives himself to the brink of insanity
An overwhelming amount of evidence shows that Hamlet faked his insanity to confuse the king and his accomplices. 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.
His indecisiveness has puzzled many. Shakespeare uses the indecisiveness of Hamlet to demonstrate that human life is about acting, not thinking. At the beginning of the play Hamlet encounters a ghost while out with his friends. The sight shocks him, but he decides to follow it. The ghost is his father, and they begin to have a full conversation.
King Hamlet comes to Hamlet as a ghost to tell him to kill Claudius, but it takes Hamlet the whole play to finally fulfill his father’s wish since he fears the consequences of murdering the king of Denmark. This affects Hamlet’s mental health and relationship with his mother as he considers committing suicide as well as blaming his mother to help him recover from his father’s death. Through Hamlet’s anger towards his uncle, depression, and blame towards his mother in conflict with his fears of killing his uncle, having God mad at him, and hurting his mother, Shakespeare explains that people often desire revenge, but feel too fearful to fulfill it. Claudius becomes king after killing Hamlet’s father and marrying his brother’s wife, establishing Hamlet’s negative attitude towards him throughout the play. The king also talks condescendingly towards Hamlet in multiple instances, making Hamlet more angry that his relative does not
Hamlet’s Tragic Flaw William Shakespeare is seen as one of the best play writers to this day. He was able to make tragedies and explain human emotion in a way that is still relevant today. Hamlet is a character that has humanity and is a strong character since he values human life. Unfortunately, this also leads to his indecisiveness and inability to act, which ultimately is his tragic flaw. Hamlet first shows indecisiveness toward killing himself and can’t decide whether or not life is worth it.
Hamlet’s madness is a product of the death of his father, which supplements the claim that fathers can impact their sons in a destructive manner. Because of his vulnerability, Hamlet was liable to do almost anything to avenge his father’s death. However, his father did not show that same loyalty. In fact, “There is no ‘I love you’ on the lips of old King Hamlet. There is no fatherly concern for his son’s life” (Word Press par.
Hamlet’s grief is apparent to the audience, as he begins lamenting about the uselessness of life. He depicts his “solid flesh”, urging it to melt and “resolve itself into a dew (129-130). Shakespeare emphasizes his grief - he truly is upset. Hamlet even calls to “the Everlasting”, wishing he had not deemed “self-slaughter” to be a sin (131-132). His cries “O, God!
With his father just being murdered by his uncle Claudius and Polonius banning the relationship between him and Ophelia, the only thought running through Hamlet’s mind was anger and revenge. The acts of violence throughout the play comes in three different forms; murder, suicide, and combat. Polonius is unexpectedly murdered, Ophelia goes mad and commits suicide, and Hamlet provokes a battle with Laertes that ends poorly for both men. All three of these violent acts can be traced back to clouded judgements, indecisiveness, anger, revenge, and heartbreak. Shakespeare created such acts of violence to keep the readers on their toes and informed, but also to invoke questions.