Shakespearewrote a play dubbed The Tragedy of Hamlet that has since been amongthe best and the most influential tragedies in English literature.The game features Hamlet, a character who seeks to revenge againsthis murderous uncle after killing his father. However, his actionsprompted questions over his sanity. This paper will analyze anddiscuss the actions and behavior of the character Hamlet in the playTragedy of Hamlet which was written by William Shakespeare.
“Hamletwas throughout perfectly sane, but feigned insanity” ("TheQuestion Of Hamlet`s Sanity – Is Hamlet`s Insanity Feigned?").The author believes that all Hamlet did throughout the play was tofeign madness through the actions that he did in the quest to revengeagainst his uncle who murdered his father. In the first act in thesecond scene, Hamlet asserts that “how weary, stale, flat, andunprofitable. Seem to me all the uses of this world!”("The Question Of Hamlet`s Sanity – Is Hamlet`s InsanityFeigned?").Here, Hamlet is bemoaning the death of his father. Besides, he isalso reflecting on her mothers’ marriage to his uncle. However, hersentiments have since drawn the attention of many critics who assertthat his treatment of the situation was otherwise abnormal andunexpected. In this context, Hamlet wishes that his flesh would meltso that he would die. Historians believe that human beings have fourvital components that make up their healthy and able bodies. Thecomponents include among others black and yellow bile. Thus, thesehistorians profoundly believe that Hamlet had an imbalance of bile inhis body. The condition, therefore, resulted in stability in hismind, a condition that led to weird actions.
"Shakespeareborrows the idea of feigned madness…" ("TheQuestion Of Hamlet`s Sanity – Is Hamlet`s Insanity Feigned?").Theauthor also believes that Hamlet was sane but only behaved in aquestionable manner in some instances of the play. However, Hamletwas, in fact, sane as evident in his speech regarding Yorick`s skull.His statements merely depict a person who acts foolishly but is inthe real sense very upright. In another instance, Hamlet says "Toput an antic disposition on" ("TheQuestion Of Hamlet`s Sanity – Is Hamlet`s Insanity Feigned?").in the first act, scene five. Hamlet says the above statement afterthe ghost informs him of the fact that his father is dead. Thecondition prompts him to plan on what he would do to revenge againstthe immortal uncle. The above statement is enough to confirm theauthor`s opinion that Hamlet was indeed feigning madness. Hamlettells his friends that he plans to pretend to be the maddest personever. The author hints that Shakespeare borrows the idea of madnessfrom a source that features primarily throughout the play dubbed"Amleth." The play also has a story of a person whose unclekills his father so that he would marry her mother. The storyexplains that the individual later feigns madness and acts in a weirdmanner so that his uncle would not harm him. Thus, Hamlet is alsofeigning madness so that his uncle doesn`t know that he is aware ofthe murder. Through this, Hamlet`s uncle would not plan any evilmotives against him.
“Hamletpretends to be mad to express his feelings…”("HamletMadness Quotes Page 2"). Theauthor is quick to assert from the start that Hamlet pretends to bemad while he is not. The author’s argument is that Hamlet performsstupid moves whenever he interacts with other people but iscivilized. One instance is his interaction with Horatio with uniqueand commendable acts. However, Hamlet only feigns craziness in othercircumstances so that he can avoid criticism of any kind togetherwith gaining information that he would otherwise have not had. Hamletdesires to “have these players play something like murder.”("Hamlet Madness Quotes Page 1").Hamlet behaves in a rather doubtful manner while he utters the abovesentiments. He even goes ahead to tell Ophelia to lie on his lap ashe seeks to console himself on the sudden demise of his father andthe unfortunate marriage of her mother to an unforgiving uncle. Thecondition exposes his acts of insanity as he pretends to attract theattention of other players in the play including Gertrude andClaudius. All the above weird actions happen during Hamlet’sinteraction with other persons throughout the play. Thus, it becomesrather evident and clear that he does so primarily to either getinformation or attention and avoid criticisms.
“Hamlethides behind madness to commit crimes against the crown.” ("HamletMadness Quotes Page 3"). Theauthor asserts that all of Hamlet’s mad actions and reactionsprimarily seek to allow him to commit criminal activities withoutcriticism. Some of these crimes include among other mutiny andconspiracy to kill his murderous uncle. Hamlet behaves crazily to apoint where society likes him for always questioning moves that arenot straight. The condition, therefore, makes it hard for his uncleto attempt any ill motive against Hamlet such as killing him. Such anaction would prompt the people in society to protest against theirking, a condition that renders murder an almost impossible move.Besides, Hamlet appears to be a very smart individual whenever hequestions other characters throughout the play. His challenge towardsClaudius and Gertrude together with Polonius shows that he is notonly wise but also witty. Therefore, Hamlet was not crazy or mad,but only pretended to be so to gain additional privileges.
Theabove discussion has cemented the claim that indeed Hamlet wasfeigning madness throughout the play. First, he only acts madnesswhenever he interacts with other people but is great while he isalone. Hamlet also appears to behave crazily to avoid criticisms overhis criminal activities. In fact, Hamlet in one of the instances saysthat he plans to act wildly. Thus, Hamlet is not mad but workscrazily.
"TheQuestion Of Hamlet`s Sanity – Is Hamlet`s Insanity Feigned?".Shakespeare-Online.Com,2017,http://www.shakespeare-online.com/plays/hamlet/hamletsanity.html.
"HamletMadness Quotes Page 1". Shmoop.Com,2017, http://www.shmoop.com/hamlet/madness-quotes.html.