Hamlet's Fatal Flaw

Topics: Hamlet, Ghost, Poetics Pages: 2 (696 words) Published: April 29, 2008
Hamlet’s Fatal Flaw
Among William Shakespeare’s most prolific works is Hamlet, a tragic play revolving around the character for which the play is titled, and his dramatic struggle with the, often chaotic, events that unfold throughout his life. Hamlet is characterized with bravery, loyalty and vast intelligence, but the intricate battles he fights among his thoughts consume him and cause him to embrace inactivity rather than making a decision and moving forward. Hamlet seeks to right many wrongs but his inability to follow through after his father’s muder, his mother’s marriage, and even his murderous uncle assuming the throne prove to be his fatal flaw and a revelation of his insanity.

In the opening Act of the play, The Ghost of Old Hamlet initially rouses thoughts of revenge in Hamlet’s head, telling Hamlet to “revenge his foul and most unnatural murder” (Act I, Scene 5). But the simple fact that his own uncle would murder his father drives Hamlet mad. He can’t comprehend the whole situation and his thoughts overwhelm him. He wishes to seek revenge, but when the opportunity presents itself, Hamlet’s racing mind convince him that revenge is not the key. Hamlet wasn’t ready to kill Claudius, but he did need proof that Claudius was guilty in his mind.

Hamlet proves Claudius’ guilt by scripting a play depicting Old Hamlet’s death, and Claudius is offended so much that he leaves the performance. He had begun to doubt his father’s ghost, and even after the play, Hamlet still remains idle in seeking revenge. When Hamlet backs away after having a clear shot at stabbing Claudius, Shakespeare makes it clear that Hamlet knowingly possesses a guilty conscience, and after the play he shows that Hamlet is also unable to come to decisions and conclusions. He gets his thoughts and emotions all misconstrued and it leads to profound inactivity.

Along with his mixed emotions regarding his father’s death, Hamlet conceals a deep hatred for his mother’s marriage to his...
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