The Sanity of Hamlet

Topics: Psychosis, Mind, Characters in Hamlet Pages: 3 (1066 words) Published: May 14, 2014
Hamlet’s mind at first glance is not all it appears to be. One would believe Hamlet to be completely insane with everything that had transpired against him. The loss of his father and his mother’s hasty marriage should have driven his mind to utter desolation and insanity, but on the contrary these events only enhanced the fortitude of his mind and intellect. Hamlet’s ability to form coherent thoughts and his clear use of diction express his sanity; the weight of avenging his father’s death and woes over his mother’s betrayal have affected his emotions, but have not corrupted his mind. The task of avenging his father’s death profoundly affected Hamlet. Taking a life did not come easily for him, but he wished to respect his father’s will. In order to put his plan into action, Hamlet knew he would have to weave a web of deception. By building up the pretense of his insanity, he believed that nobody would be able to foresee the plot that he devised, for nobody ever suspects the fool. Hamlet was “essentially [not mad], but mad in craft,” (III. iv. 190-191). By putting this facade around himself, Hamlet was quite the opposite of insane. Like Odysseus, he built a Trojan horse around himself in order to sneak into the enemy base, a brilliant plan on both their parts. Hamlet was too “assiduous” and “methodical,” (Firkins 631)to be psychotic. His mind was not affected by all of the affairs that took place, it was his character that was affected. Hamlet saw much to be gained by feigning his madness, and because of this he did many things that the persons of the play construed to be insanity. Another key factor that favors his sanity, is his madness around certain characters. Around Polonius, Claudius, Gertrude, Ophelia, Rosencrantz, and Guildenstern he behaves completely irrational, but around Horatio he is completely civil. He only lapses into prose when he is fabricating insanity. Hamlet is simply a man dealing with a futile plight. His diction was so cleverly composed...
Continue Reading

Please join StudyMode to read the full document

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • Essay about The Sanity of Hamlet
  • Hamlet
  • Hamlet Essay
  • Essay about Hamlet
  • Hamlet Essay
  • Hamlet Essay
  • hamlet Essay
  • Hamlet Essay

Become a StudyMode Member

Sign Up - It's Free