Hamlet Character Analysis

Topics: Hamlet, William Shakespeare, Tragedy Pages: 4 (1147 words) Published: April 19, 2013
The Tragedy of Hamlet, Prince of Denmark
Character Analysis: Hamlet
In William Shakespeare’s play “Hamlet,” the main character, Hamlet is portrayed without a set position in society as well as in his personal life. Through careful observation the reader is able to analyze the complexity of Hamlets mysterious character. The complexity of Hamlets character is portrayed through one aspect that makes William Shakespeare’s ability to step away from a conventional one-dimension character by utilizing a single character to represent various stages of human complexity. As the plot develops the reader notes that Hamlet is aware of his evolving character. For example, the reader notes early in the play: ’Tis not alone my inky cloak

nor customary suits of solemn black,
Nor windy suspiration of forc’ breath,
No, nor the fruitful river in the eye,
Nor the dejected havior of the visage
Together with all forms, moods, and [shapes] of grief,
That can [denote] me truly.” (1.2.81-85)
Through this dialogue Hamlet insists that he is an individual with many psychological and philosophical facets, though he himself will demonstrate difficulty in understanding and accepting all of his layers. Throughout the course of the play, Hamlet affirms his complexity and cautions the other characters against reducing him to a single, predictable type. The lesson that Shakespeare conveys, then, is that human beings are both good and bad, and that their complexity should not be negated, but rather explored.

In addititon, Hamlet is a character who is very much driven by emotion and impulse. After his father’s ghost reveals his dark secret, Hamlet declares what he will do: I’ll wipe away all trivial fond records,

All saws of books, all forms, all pressures past
………………………………………………………………. And thy commandment all alone shall live
Within the book and volume of my brain,
Unmix’d with baser matter…. (1.5.105-110)
Hamlet is able to understand that he is the one who needs to see...
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