Is Hamlet insane? That is the question. Literary scholars have debated this question for more than 400 years. Throughout the play “Hamlet,” by William Shakespeare, there are questions of whether Hamlet is sane or not. In general there two types of theories about him, one is that he suffers from some sort of malady, either insanity or neurosis. Then there are those who believe Hamlet is a genius and a hero. A character who was put through an extreme test and triumphed over his moral problem. In the Article “Hamlet’s Precarious Emotional Balance,” by Theodore Lidz, he states that although he is clever, he still doubts himself. In the article “Madness,” by P.J Aldus, he states that hamlet suffered from paranoid schizophrenia. Hamlet was definitely a genius and a moral man. He does struggle with the decision to avenge his father’s death. He is so obsessed with his father’s murder that he over reacts to and rejects the people around him, giving reason to suspect his insanity. In the end Hamlet does get revenge for his father’s death, thus winning a very spiritual victory in the face of death.
In Aldus’ article, “Madness,” he states that Hamlet is suffering from paranoid schizophrenia. He says that Hamlet is in a “paranoid state,”(Aldus 4). He says that Hamlet is “most often in a state of suspicion; he is surrounded by spies who intend to harm him even to kill him, and therefore he must spy on everyone and seek to kill,” (Aldus 4). Aldus says that Hamlet’s “paranoid quality is locked to the arrogance, which is often violent, always potentially. He is also obsessed by the compulsive power of sex,” (Aldus 4). First Hamlet is never violent,
the only time he acts violent is in the end when he fights Laertes, which he thinks is just for fun. Then when he kills Claudius, after everyone knows that Claudius is a murderer. Hamlet never has sex in this play. He vows to forget about everything, even Ophelia, to avenge his father’s death.... [continues]
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