Women Repression In Hamlet

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All the way through time and history, women have been treated as a subject of persecution and oppression in many societies. The manner in which men have controlled, used and abused women has been reinforced into a movement of human rights. Such treatment is fought against in the civilized societies with equality and freedom in the center of it. Clearly, it has been obvious in Shakespeare 's plays how women have been viewed and treated by the characters. He has demonstrated for us how women are in the center of domination and control (Dorn, 1999). The scenes he shows to us are repeated in different ways displaying the horrible actions that are taken against women in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. One important female repression is not…show more content…
Ophelia in Hamlet is being mistreated by her father and by the characters around her. She suffers from extreme cruelty by her own father Polonius. He is the worst image of a father because he disrespects, controls and manipulates his own daughter for his own whims (Dorn, 1999). For example, he orders Ophelia to participate in uncovering the thoughts of Hamlet "...Walk you here… Read on this book that shows such exercise may color your loneliness"(III.i:41-46) in this excerpt, he orders her to pretend to read from a book in order to make it more reasonable to be alone when she meets Hamlet. Obviously, she follows exactly what her father tells her to as she replies to his orders "I shall obey my lord"(I.iv:136). She continues talking with Hamlet (her lover) as she tries to give back to him the gifts in which he once has given to her. Similarly, Hamlet also mistreats her as he replies that he has never given her any gifts, and he continues denying even though she insists that he did. Hamlet then denies that he has ever loved her and that she is better off in a nunnery. He goes further in identifying her only by her sexuality and he judges her to be a breeder of sinners. She suffers from an emotional breakdown because of the treatment of the one person she loves (Hulbert et al., 2006). "How now, Ophelia! You need not tell us what lord Hamlet said; we heard it all"(III.i:181-183), cruelly, in this excerpt, her father Polonius does not seem to understand the emotional…show more content…
In comparison, both of Ophelia and Miranda seem to show some kind of character development throughout the plays. Ophelia as mentioned before is completely dominated by her father, and she is left with no more guidance in her life after his death. Before, she has been manipulated and dominated by her father in every action she has made. She is in the line between her father and her lover, but she seals her own fate by following her father 's commands despite the damage it has caused to her relationship with Hamlet. However, despite Hamlet 's cruel words and actions towards her, she still refuses to think ill of him because the Hamlet she knows would never treat her this way. Then she is left to believe that he truly is mad "O what a noble mind is here o’er thrown…O woe is me, to have seen what I have seen, to see what I see"(III.i:153). Towards the very end, the only decision she makes is her death. Her death is the only choice she has ever made for herself. As the clown in the play says "For here lies the point: if I drown myself wittingly, it argues an act: and an act hath three branches; it is, to act, to do, to perform: argal, she drowned herself wittingly" (V.i:9-13) this excerpt displays that her death is not an accident; she could have struggled in the river, but she clearly neglects to save herself from such a fate. Her death scene in the river works as a metaphor of life that she is no longer able to hold on to. On the other hand, Miranda is being controlled by
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