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Irrespective of social class, religious inclination, size of accumulated wealth, epoch inclination, and beauty, death kisses people equality every time it knocks on the door of its victim! The play Hamlet is tragic. Hamlet, an affluent prince, is moved by the death of his father.
However, opposite to his expectation, his mother seems unmoved by the unfortunate demise. One of the longest plays written by Shakespeare, the play Hamlet Prince of Denmark is characterized as a tragedy. Thus, the key concept of this reflective treatise is to ascertain the reasons why Hamlet treats Ophelia with contempt. In addition, this view is related to the events in “Hamlet Prince of Denmark”.
The key antagonists and protagonists demise eventually in the play “Hamlet Prince of Denmark”. Interestingly, death is presented as a redeemer of what each character stands for (Hamlet: Plot Summary 2).
Hamlet, a Denmark Prince, is the main character in the play. He is the only son to the dead King Hamlet and Queen Gertrude. Claudius is the present King and his uncle that becomes a new husband to his mother. In the climax of the play, Claudius appears to be responsible for the death of King Hamlet. It turns out that he murdered his brother to marry Gertrude.
The main theme in this play is death. Particularly, the death of King Hamlet forms the focal story line. Driven by anger, Prince Hamlet assassinates the innocent man behind the curtain because he has been confused by Claudius. In an interesting turn of events, the victim of his anger is the father of Ophelia, Polonius. Ophelia cannot live with the pain of losing his father and soon commit suicide.
In a nasty twist, Ophelia’s brother, Laertes actualizes his vow of avenging on the murder of his father and sister by stabbing Prince Hamlet with a poisoned arrow. Unfortunately, he is also wounded and dies (Analysis of Characters in Hamlet 4). Thus, though Hamlet loves Ophelia, the bitterness in his heart cannot let him offer full love and gratitude to Ophelia (Deception in Hamlet 9). Hamlet tells Ophelia, “It would cost you a groaning to take off my edge” (Bosak 75).
Death is an obsession in the life of Prince Hamlet. Ironically, Hamlet is painted as a weakling with a mental disorder. Severally, the play points at Hamlet as vacillating person who appears confused as the play opens. Besides, Hamlet is a distrustful and bitter loner who has a bitter hatred towards Claudius.
Moreover, his hatred becomes more as his mother rushes into a marriage with Claudius, and this makes Hamlet wonder whethr she was loyalty was devoted to Hamlet’s father or she was also involved in the murder (Introduction to Hamlet 6). This makes Hamlet strode alone as he ponders his next move, and a ghost appear to him informing him of the unfortunate events leading to the death of his father. These events make Hamlet a bitter person who cannot differentiate love and selfishness.
He does not care about Ophelia because he despises women in general, especially after Hamlet discovers about the affair between his mother and Claudius. His hatred overwhelmes his mind, he assumes Ophelia is like any other woman. Hamlet tells Ophelia, “O God, your only jig-maker. What should a man dobut be merry? For, look you, how cheerfully mymother looks, and my father died within these two hours” (Shakespeare 71).
Hamlet is not sure as to whether he should take revenge on his mother too or not, as advised by the ghost. Specifically, in scene 1 (58), his indecisiveness is apparent in “To be or not to be” (Shakespeare 58). Apparently, he is angry with his mother for rushing into another marriage. In this context, what truly hurt Hamlet is the reality that the person who killed his father is not a stranger but an affiliate of their family, his uncle, a brother to his father.
he motives of the murder could be different, but one of them, for sure, is craving for power and envy. Hamlet undergoes emotional pain because of the tragedy occurred in his family, which makes his unable to control himself and his feelings. He passes this pain to the innocent Ophelia. Hamlet lives in fear for his life as he does not know whether his uncle has the same plans for him since he has inherited his father’s throne, and this places Hamlet at a tight spot.
Probably, Hamlet treats Ophelia with contempt due to fear of her being used by Claudius in order to kill him. Hamlet’s mother seems to have been blinded by all these sentiments and resort to stand firm by his decision regarding the murderous Claudius. Hamlet follows the advice of the ghost and avenges for the death of his father. In the process, antagonists and protagonists die.
Conclusively, Hamlet’s bitterness and lust for revenge make him treat his lover with suspicion; consequently, such behavior and atitude toward Ophelia lead to her death. Ophelia becomes part of the collateral damage in this revenge saga.
Analysis of Characters in Hamlet 2010. Web.
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Bosak, Joe 2002, The Tragedy of Hamlet, Prince of Denmark. PDF file. Web.
Deception in Hamlet 2010. Web.
Hamlet: Plot Summary 2008. Web.
Introduction to Hamlet 2010. Web.
Shakespeare, William. Hamlet. Ed. David Bevington and David Scott Kastan. New York: Bantam, 2005. Print.