A Comparison of the Element of Hamartia in “Hamlet”, “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock”, and “Agamemnon” Thesis:
One of the elements that can be compared in the plays “Hamlet”, “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock”, and “Agamemnon” is hamartia. Attempt has been made to analyse the main characters’ personality traits and provide the reader with specific examples that help to clarify how hamartia is present in each of the three plays. In order to analyse all the three characters’ personalities and their roles in the plays, it would be best to know first what hamartia means to further connect them with this element. By definition, hamartia is a flaw in the hero’s personality that allows them to commit certain tragic or fatal mistakes. To better understand the significance of hamartia in the plays, a thorough understanding of each character’s personality flaws as well as how they respond to the circumstances is just as important. The central characters of these plays include Prince Hamlet in “Hamlet”, Alfred Prufrock in “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock”, and Agamemnon in “Agamemnon”. We will understand how hamartia ties the plots together; analyses and compares Hamlet, Prufrock, and Agamemnon’s roles in each of the plays; and evaluates how their personalities affect the outcome of their lives. Opening sentence:
There are numerous examples of how the characters in the above-mentioned plays fail to demonstrate the ability to succeed, and thus, commit tragic mistakes that will doom them to their tragic ends. Paragraph 1:
Detail 1: To begin with, Prince Hamlet in “Hamlet” is considered to be a scholar, a thinker, and the kind of person who would not act without thoroughly analysing the circumstances. Hamlet’s flaws as a central character become evident when the intrigue begins to take shape. The intrigue in “Hamlet” shows Hamlet’s father coming to him, as a ghost, and pleads revenge for his death. Hamlet becomes aware that his uncle, Claudius, murdered his father in order to marry his mother, Gertrude, and deprive him of his thrown. It dawns on Hamlet that this treachery must be avenged. Hamlet will be consumed by the idea of confronting his uncle in order to restore his and his father’s honour. Detail 2: However, Hamlet, as a man who puts reason above all else, hesitates whether killing a man to avenge another man’s death is the right thing to do. At this point, Hamlet’s personality is taking shape; he finds himself hesitant and incapable of deciding what course of action to take. During the play, he repeatedly projects himself as an indecisive character, one that fails to contain his emotions and overthinks everything to the point of madness. He constantly reflects upon his situation; however, he accomplishes nothing towards his initial goal of avenging his father. Hamlet’s failed attempts to kill Claudius and avenge his father take an emotional toll on him, and he begins to pressure himself and judge his own character as a man. Hamlet’s opinion of himself becomes negatively affected by his failures, and he is overwhelmed by feelings of regret and self-pity. Detail 3: At this point in the play, his rational mind and emotional stability appear to be compromised, and his self-judgment and introspection worsen, as he fails to control himself and the events happening around him. Hamlet allows his uncle to take decisive moves, which threaten him and the ones he loves. His emotional instability provokes a chain reaction of fatal and tragic mistakes, one after the other, as he cannot manage to control his emotions. Accidentally, he kills Ophelia’s father. Furthermore, Hamlet’s mother is murdered and Ophelia commits suicide. However, Hamlet, in the end, manages to accomplish his goal of killing Claudius, but this comes with a price. Analysing the character of Hamlet, one concludes that all this could have been easily prevented if he had been less cautious and less afraid of taking any decisive actions. If Hamlet had...
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