The Obsession People Have with a Thought

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Literature can be interpreted through texts such as essays, novels, poems, non-fiction and fiction and can be interpreted differently depending on each audience. In “Hamlet,” written by William Shakespeare, the theme is portrayed through the characters endeavors and his reaction to problematic situations by deliberating obstacles and weighing out their outcome. Hamlet states “There is nothing good or bad but thinking makes it so,” relating to how often people deem a thought or an idea good or bad, when in truth, it is the obsession with a thought that carries its outcome. Thinking then relates to the poem “A Photograph of Me,” by Margaret Atwood through the audiences knowledge of the text. Starting out as a dynamic piece about scenery turns into an illusion of truth and that is when the audience must infer between the lines. Then finally, Bertrand Russell in “The Good Life,” displays that thinking and the knowledge of thought should not be provoked by just emotion, but rather, a combination of the two to create a successful life. Thinking is different to each of the works as it is to each individual person, whether it is driven by psychological intentions attached to emotion, observing information or which is the best way to lead a successful and happy life.

Hamlet is a doomed character designed by William Shakespeare, who spends the remainder of his life trying to avenge his father’s murder. When Hamlet is perplexed with the climactic question of the play, “will he do it?” Hamlet takes on the burden of cross-analyzing his own thoughts, riddled with anger and fury towards the murderer. His state of mind grows weary due to the amount of attention he feeds to his thoughts; resulting in behavioral attributes that define his characters reckless actions throughout the play. In act 3, scene 3, Hamlet is in his mother’s room conversing with her about his insanity when seeing his father’s ghost,

“Sense, sure, you have,
Else could you not have motion; but sure, that sense
Is apoplex’d; for madness would not err.
Nor sense to ecstasy was ne’er so thrall’d
But it reserv’d some quantity of choice.”
(Line 70-75)

The device that makes this quote so powerful is the irony lingering within the statement. Hamlet tells his mother that her logic is flawed and her sense is a slave to her passion which leads her to make a bad choice (marrying his father’s uncle) when in reality, Hamlet is using his anger, much like his mother’s passion, to act upon his flawed logic (avenging his father’s murder). Because of Hamlets comment towards Rosencrantz in act 2, scene 2, he lays out the theme for the whole play.

“There is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so: to me it is a prison.”

In this quotation, Hamlet tells Rosencrantz that there is nothing either good or bad that can’t become a prison in the mind and to Hamlet, Denmark is the prison. This line can be referred to throughout the play being a device for theme. Thinking is the apple in which Eve is tempted by, and the snake is the emotion embedded in Hamlet.

His emotion drives his thought process which causes him to over think and over analyse his mind, leading him to act upon thoughts that aren't logically formed by instead, driven by the hearts revenge. Though Hamlets thoughts are the sole purpose of the actions developed in the play, in the text by Margaret Atwood, the development of the poem is created by the audiences thought process.

Margaret E. Atwood is a Canadian born poet from 1939 and had written “A Photograph of Me,” in 1998. The poem explores the setting of a forest, perhaps a cottage. The poem states that the paper looks “smeared” with “blue lines and grey flecks blended into it.” Later to recognize that the paper was a photo and that the photo was taken with time. The diction used in the poem suggests that the narrative is about a person, remembering the photo, remembering the trees, the lake and the small framed...
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