A Woman 's Descent Into Madness

1588 Words May 3rd, 2015 7 Pages
Shayna Pospisil
Professor Callis
English 112
29 April 2015
A women’s descent into madness Hamlet is praised as one of the greatest literary works ever written but unlike the title, many characters play key roles in the development of the story and his progression towards revenge induced madness. One such character is Hamlet’s lover Ophelia. She is a pivotal character in the effectiveness as well as execution of the plot for revenge. One fact that is commonly short sited is the relationship Ophelia has with Hamlet and how that ultimately affects his road towards revenge. Without Ophelia there is no Hamlet. Ophelia’s innocence, lack of knowledge and ignorance, and weakness of the mind all play a key role in not only her own but also Hamlet’s demise. One of the most talked about subjects in the play itself is Ophelia’s innocence of purity. Because Hamlet was going to Denmark a relationship with Ophelia would never work therefore her father felt the intense need to protect her innocence. Any kind of relationship would be detrimental to not only Ophelia but her family as well. If Ophelia were to lose her purity before marriage she would no longer be desirable to any other man because she would be “used goods”. That would reflect not only on herself but on her family. Another interesting point is just how protective her brother Laertes is of her virtue. In Act I, Laertes gives advice to Ophelia on the pitfalls of a pre-marital relationship in a lengthy speech that 's geared…
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