Male/Female Relationships In Hamlet
Hamlet is involved in intense emotional relationships with both Ophelia and Gertrude, the only two female characters in the play. While these relationships are for the most part very rocky and full of distrust, there is still hope for healthy relationships among men and women. The reasons for how these characters acted is understandable, and their reactions are quite typical.
The relationship between Hamlet and Gertrude is one that has been torn apart by Hamlet's fathers death. Hamlet reacts to the death in a way that he sees most proper, which included wearing his true emotions on his sleeves and letting the world see his anguish and grief. However, Gertrude reacts very differently. She hides her emotions or puts them away for no one to see, for grief and sorrow can be seen as a weakness, and a queen having weakness doesn't send positive signals to her countrymen, especially in times of war. Still thinking of how to keep the country together she has two options of who should succeed the throne of Denmark. Either her son Hamlet or her brother in law Claudius. She knows her son is in a very delicate state with the death of his father and knows the pressure of leading a country on the brink of war would tear him apart and likely destroy the country. So out of love for her son and country she decides to marry Claudius in hope that he may take this burden off of her son and guide the country through this conflict.
Hamlet on the other hand takes the news of his mothers decision to marry Claudius as any young man would and believes his mother to be dishonoring his father's good name and her decision to be out of lust. "O God, a beast that wants discourse of reason Would have mourned longer- married with my uncle, My fathers brother, but no more like my father Than I to Hercules...O, most wicked speed, to post With such dexterity to incestuous sheets!" Act I, scene II, ll 150-157. This quote epitomizes Hamlet's...
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