Hamlet Research Paper

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In the play Hamlet, by William Shakespeare, the protagonist, Hamlet returns from school because of the recent death of his father. He comes home and soon finds out his mother is going to marry his father's brother, Claudius. The play is one of Shakespeares most famous tragedies. This play portrays all the key elements of a tragedy: murder, betrayl, bloody retribution. In the play young prince concieves a "brilliant" plan so he can take revenge on his fathers death. Shakespeare uses witty lines and great silouquies which make this a classic.

Hamlet is obsessed with the idea of death, and during the course of the play he contemplates death from many different perspectives. He ponders the physical aspects of death, as seen with Yoricks's skull, his father's ghost, as well as the dead bodies in the cemetery. He says one of the most famous lines, "To be, or not to be; that is the question: Whether `tis nobler in the mind to suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune, or to take arms against a sea of troubles, and, by opposing, end them? To die: to sleep; No more; and by a sleep to say we end the heartache and the thousand natural shocks that flesh is heir to, `tis consummation devoutly to be wish'd. To die, to sleep." (III.1.58-64). Hamlet also contemplates the spiritual aspects of the afterlife with his various soliloquies. Emotionally Hamlet is attached to death with the passing of his father and his lover Ophelia. The madness that Hamlet portrays is understandable but he cannot get over the death of his father and continues to wear all black for months. Death surrounds Hamlet, and forces him to consider death from various points of view. He begins to realize no matter who you are when you die you just turn to bones.

Hamlet also is obsessed with Ophelia. Although at times it seems he doesn't have an interest for her but he is just frustrated that he cannot have her so he does hurtful things like telling her to go to a nunnery. Although Hamlets behavior toward Ophelia is inconsistent, I think he really did love her. For instance Hamlet barges into Ophelia's room and grabs her by the wrists, without saying a word, sighs and leaves. In my opinion, it's an act to divert suspicion away from Hamlet's true purpose of wanting to kill Claudius, his father's murderer. Ophelia's father, Polonius, believes that Ophelia's rejection of Hamlets desire has caused Hamlet to go insane but Hamlet is really just doing that to make Polonious think he is insane. Then when Hamlet sees Ophelia at the play, he's hurt because she's rejected him, by giving him back his personal belongings and letters that he's written her. Just like any man would do if he was rejected by the woman he loves just because her father wont allow it. So to take out his anger he tells her he's never loved her. He wants to hurt her back by talking nasty to her. "That's a fair thought to lie between maids' legs." (III.2.100) He has no use for women right now. He feels that women are pointless and not worthwhile. Ophelia can turn her feelings off for him because of her complete loyalty to her father and brother. Hamlets antic disposition was the main reason why Ophelia committed suicide and why Hamlet fought with his mother. Hamlet believed that if he showed no more feelings for Ophelia and showed hatred and cruelty for his mother, people and particularly the King and Polonius would believe that he has truly gone crazy. He shows that he has no feelings for Ophelia when he says to her "You should not have believed me, for virtue cannot so inoculate our old stock but we shall relish of it. I loved you not" (III ,i, 116-118). At the time of Ophelia's burial, Hamlet jumps in Ophelia's grave saying, "I loved Ophelia. For thousand brothers could not with all their quantity of love Make up my sum. What wilt thou do for her?"(V ,i, 245-247). This clearly indicates that Hamlet did love Ophelia and was only pretending as part of his plan. Similarly, Hamlet's disposition...
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