Is Hamlet Crazy?

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Hamlet can only be considered man driven through turmoil due to his quest for revenge. As Hamlet faked madness, it seemed that his plans were easier to obtain. Hamlet only acts as an insane man would while others were around. Alone, he would turn into a much saner Hamlet. He commits no actions without reason, and he is far too intelligent to be proclaimed mentally unstable. Hamlet’s “insane” actions are also very complex because they allow not only his points to be made, but in a believably insane way, which contrasts greatly with the expected ramblings of a truly insane person. After he found out that Claudius killed his father, Hamlet swore that he would gain vengeance. He also wants vengeance because he is the rightful heir to the throne, an opportunity that was snatched away from his uncle. (Shannon Kisch) In order to get his revenge, he told Horatio he will put on an “antic disposition”. The first explanation for Hamlet’s strange behavior is his love for Ophelia. Ophelia tells the story of how a scruffy looking Hamlet approached her, simply ran his hand down her arm, stared at her and left. Polonius assumes that love for Ophelia drove Hamlet crazy and tells the king of his discovery. Polonius tests his theory by placing Ophelia in the path of Hamlet, before speaking to Hamlet himself. When speaking to Polonius, Hamlet may sound insane, but he uses this conversation to warn Polonius to keep his daughter away from the king (“the sun”) as well as to insult him. These insults and warnings seem to suggest that his madness is nothing but a hoax. In addition, when speaking to Rosencrantz and Guildenstern, Hamlet drops some of the mad characteristics he displays with other characters. He quotes some of a monologue he had heard some time before when the players arrive on the scene. He also plots revenge and plans how to test the guilt of the king. He does this by inviting his uncle/stepfather and mother to a play, which reenacts the murder of his...
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