Hamlet Essay Topics

Hamlet – historical and political context

The political and religious upheavals before and after the death of Henry VIII had left their mark on the people of England. The King had done previous un-heard of things: He had divorced two wives and had had two executed. In the brief reigns which followed, persecution, first of the Catholics and then of Protestants,… View Article

The ghost in Hamlet

The Ghost is an essential element to the plot of Hamlet, revealing the true cause of the King’s death and establishing the need for revenge as well as confronting Hamlet with a moral dilemma, and is used by Shakespeare to open up several ideas and questions in the play. Shakespeare employs an ambiguous theme throughout… View Article

Explore the presentation of revenge in ‘Hamlet’

Revenge is a key theme in Hamlet. It is not only essential to understanding Hamlet’s character, it forms the structure for the whole play, supporting and overlapping other important themes that arise. Though it is Hamlets revenge that forms the basis for the story, tied into this is the vengeance of Laertes and Fortinbras, whose… View Article

Hamlet has been read by various critics as dramatically

Revenge tragedy was a popular theme when Shakespeare began his play writing career. The central feature of each revenge play was a hero who sought to avenge a wrong in a society where the law was unreliable. “Hamlet” is usually described as a revenge tragedy. The revenge in Renaissance drama emerged as a dominant genre…. View Article

I hold my duty as i hold my soul both to my God

Polonius’ statement, found in Act Two, Scene Two, reflects the symmetry and order of the society he lives in. He inhabits a world of certainty and medieval convention. The play can be seen to challenge the statement, both in the action and in the characters, particularly in the character of Hamlet himself. It is Hamlet,… View Article

‘I shall obey, my lord’

‘Where be his quiddities now, his qualities, his cases, his tenures, and his tricks? … … Is this the fine of his fines and the recovery of his recoveries, to have his fine plate full of fine dirt? Will his vouchers vouch him no more of his purchases, and double ones too, than the length… View Article

How does Hamlet deal with the revengers r&amp

Revenge is defined as “retaliation for an offence or injury”; Hamlet has two main reasons for needing revenge, political and moral. Politically he has to kill Claudius for the offence of denying Hamlet, the heir to the Danish kingdom, his usurped crown. He also has a moral reason, as the “son of a dear father… View Article

According to Aristotle

Laertes verbose and theatrical behaviour causes the audience to dislike him. Nevertheless, unlike Hamlet he is willing to seize revenge at the first opportunity. There are many different perspectives on how Shakespeare addresses the theme of revenge in Hamlet, and also whether it is done successfully. One criticism made by Catherine Belsey, undermines Shakespeare’s approach,… View Article

Explore the ways in which Shakespeare presents male characters

The female characters in ‘Hamlet’ have several vital roles within the play that serve to add depth and interest to the overall plot. Shakespeare employs the women to emphasize key themes such as betrayal, that might not otherwise be drawn out, and also enable the audience to gain a deeper understanding of the main male… View Article

Shakespeare is unable to present women other than as passive victims

It could be argued that Shakespeare constructs both Ophelia and Gertrude as weak, powerless and vulnerable in contrast to the powerful men around them. At the same time however, he is also reflecting women’s social position at the time through these characters, so his view is something that would be traditional for the audience. In… View Article

Is Hamlet a man of inaction?

Humans are creatures of habit, we get into a daily routine, and over time, learning from experience our mind equips itself to dealing with certain situations that we encounter on a regular basis, when this routine is broken by an unexpected event our minds can be inadequately equipped to deal with this because you can… View Article

Gertrude’s as Shakespeare

Where a twenty-first century audience would express sympathy for Hamlet’s loss and would understand his hesitation in taking vengeance, an Elizabethan audience would not sympathise towards him for avenging his father’s death, and would question why Hamlet is showing inaction. As Dori?? Ripley suggests, ‘The church advocated God’s vengeance, while the state demanded justice through… View Article

What evidence is there to suggest that Hamlet

What evidence is there to suggest that Hamlet would have become a successful leader of Denmark had he survived? In the final scene Forthinbras declares that Hamlet, “Was likely, had he been put on, To have proved most royal;” By examining traits of Hamlet’s character and comparing his to the characters of others in positions… View Article

Challenges and Opportunities

The most famous soliloquy, sometimes through its ambiguity manages to convey Hamlet as the Renaissance man who questions himself and his judgements. It occurs in Act 3 Scene 1, shortly before the play takes place. This soliloquy in particular has a strong theme of suicide running throughout it, most notoriously, ‘Whether ’tis nobler in the… View Article