The relationship between Hamlet and Gertrude is strained at first. From the beginning of the play to act III, Hamlet is bitter with his mother. He feels this way because it has been less than
In today’s world, women of all ages are given equal rights and freedom. In Shakespeare’s time, woman’s obligations were to follow the rules of the men and obey the men in their lives’. “Frailty, thy name is woman;” Hamlet implies the powerlessness of the two women characters in the play. In Hamlet, the roles of Gertrude and Ophelia are very important in that they are the only two female characters in the play. Gertrude, the Queen of Denmark and mother of Hamlet, and Ophelia, the lover of Hamlet, are characterized as controlled and lost in their lives because they are being used by the men throughout the play. Fundamentally, Shakespeare illustrates the nature of Gertrude and Ophelia as powerless victims by the women being subjects of men,
At the beginning of the play, we get a very biased insight into the character of Gertrude and how those around her perceive her. This is because Hamlet and the ghost of Hamlet are both very biased as they feel a sense of injustice at Gertrude's marriage to Claudius, her
Due to Hamlet’s psychological state, he felt confused and betrayed by his mother. His mother marrying his dead father’s brother opened gates to his madness. To Hamlet’s mind, women represent frailty; they are weak and regard them as an embodiment of weakness. He referred to his mother as a morally and spiritually weak woman as her incestuous inconstancy drove her to remarry immediately after her husband’s death and that she committed a sin. The most notable frailty of Gertrude seems to be that, whether by nature or nurture, she cannot exist without men. He recorded saying that Gertrude, “a little month or ere those shoes were old, with which she followed mo poor father’s body” (1.2.147-148). She needs a man as her guide to her perception
Linette Martir Ms. Given Honors English 21 December 2017 Queen Gertrude and Ophelia as Servants in a Royal Castle of Males “We need everyone to be a feminist. Feminism is the fight for the equality of sexes, not for the domination of one sex over another” (Vallaud-Belkacem). Literary theories are lenses through which one can see in literature. An example of a literary theory is the feminist theory, which is created to enlighten others on social problem that are ignored or misinterpreted. Feminism existed since the 1500’s but the theory was created in the 1900’s. Due to the creation of the feminist theory, an audience can look through the feminist lens when reading a book or even watching a movie. This allows an audience to detect how women are portrayed or treated. Throughout the play Hamlet by William Shakespeare, Gertrude and Ophelia are unimportant to the plot. They are not only unimportant, they are also mistreated. Examining through the feminist lens in the 16th century, William Shakespeare reveals the way in which women are mistreated by men in Hamlet utilizing Gertrude and Ophelia as victims. With that in mind, the male roles in Hamlet are dominant because women are lower than men. Both Hamlet and Polonius mistreat Gertrude and Ophelia as if it is normal. The reason Shakespeare normalizes their controllable ways, is because during the time period Hamlet takes place mistreating women was not unusual. Since it is normal, Polonius and Hamlet treat the women poorly without realizing they are incorrect. Shakespeare realized this was an issue so he decided to expose the problem through his writing. Ironically, Gertrude is the Queen and the mother of Hamlet, but that does not stop him from having control over her. To explain further, in Gertrude’s bedroom Hamlet disrespects his mother greatly by making her feel guilty for her choices. He believes “...Gertrude is a moral self who must be brought to account for her sins and must work through the same confrontation of guilt as every other member...” (Montgomery 102). As Hamlet’s mother, Gertrude should have power over him and have the strong voice that can stop him. Instead Hamlet controls Gertrude and demands her to do things such as never to “let the bloat King
Queen Gertrude is accredited as/for being a main character in William Shakespeare’s The Tragedy of Hamlet, King of Denmark even though her character has only 155 lines. Most productions portray Gertrude as a shallow, self-satisfying woman and fail to recognize her as a guilt ridden individual frustrated by her inability to please both her son and husband. While both Kenneth Branagh and Mel Gibson occasionally show Gertrude's desire to please Hamlet and Claudius in their depictions of Hamlet, they mainly portray Gertrude to be a scheming adulteress. Even though Gertrude is an object of lust in the play, Gertrude herself is not lustful, but rather submissive to power and her desire to please both Claudius and Hamlet.
The purpose of this essay is to analyze the role of Gertrude in "Hamlet", which is counted as one of the famous plays of English language (Thompson and Neil Taylor 74) and the most popular work of Shakespeare (Wells and Stanton 1). This essay will evaluate the role of 'Gertrude', who was the mother of Prince Hamlet and also the title character of the play.
To what extent does evil reign in the heart of Queen Gertrude in Shakespeare’s Hamlet? This essay will delve into her character, and into the deposit of literary criticism regarding her, in order to analyze her character in depth.
We first realize in Act I, Scene 2 that poor judgment is her major character flaw. As the mother of a grieving son, Gertrude should have been more sensitive to Hamlet's feelings. Instead, less than two months after King Hamlet's death, Gertrude remarries Claudius, her dead husband's own brother. Gertrude should have realized how humiliated Hamlet would feel as a
Queen Gertrude is the mother to Hamlet, widow to the late King, and new wife to King Claudius as shown within the first act of Hamlet. Following her marriage to King Claudius, her relationship with her son Hamlet becomes strained. Queen Gertrude symbolizes much of what is considered to be a negative aspect of womanhood. To Hamlet, Queen Gertrude is a failure of a woman. Through his dialogue, it is presented that Hamlet desires a woman and mother to be concerned for her family and place tradition above all else. When Hamlet’s mother makes a decision outside of that realm and marries King Claudius, Hamlet strives to berate her for her choices. Through
This essay intends to explore Gertrude’s situation in the play in an attempt to answer many questions about her, the queen, wife of Claudius and former wife of his deceased brother, King Hamlet.
“Frailty, thy name is woman” (1.2. 150)! This controversial line, followed by several more from the play Hamlet, by William Shakespeare, displays a common view towards women that portrays them as being weak and reliant on men. Throughout the play, two women, Ophelia and Gertrude, are shown to be dependent on the men in their lives. They both take on a senselessly obedient state of mind. Even though they share this common characteristic, Ophelia and Gertrude are very different characters. Ophelia is a beautiful, young woman who is the love interest of the protagonist, Hamlet. Ophelia obeys her father, Polonius, without hesitation and has very little experience with making her own decisions. Gertrude was the wife of Old Hamlet, and is now the wife of Claudius, the current king and Old Hamlet’s brother. Gertrude desires affection and status more than she cares about the truth of what happened to her late husband. The men in this play have no sense of how they treat the females. This patriarchal way of life was prominent in the late 16th century and early 17th century which was about the time that Hamlet was written and performed. This relationship between the genders is interconnected within the play and with society during that particular time period. The characters of Ophelia and Gertrude were solid examples of how women were viewed as inferior to men during this time in history.
How would society normally view a mother-son relationship? Most people would view it as unconditional love. In this case William Shakespeare’s Hamlet, character names are Hamlet, Claudius and Gertrude. The Queen of Denmark is Gertrude and her son is Hamlet. He is the Prince of Denmark. Their relationship is not to much of an unconditional love. Hamlet and Gertrude’s relationship in William Shakespeare's Hamlet can be described as sickened, bitter, and skeptical. Gertrude and Hamlet relationship is sickened, bitter, and skeptical because Gertrude went out and got married to Hamlet’s uncle without him knowing and Hamlet slo found out that Gertrude knew about his father's death and never told him about it.
While Ophelia represents weakness and obedience, Gertrude, the only other female character in the play, embodies the exact opposite: power and independence. Gertrude wields much power as the queen and acts to keep it by marrying her brother-in-law after her first husband’s death. She makes decisions on her own. Far from innocent, she even admits she can see “such black and grained spots” (Ham. 3.4.100-101) in her soul. Her admission of guilt that “spills itself in fearing to be spilt” (Ham. 4.5.24-25) suggests that she may hold a lot more power than she appears to externally. Perhaps she has her own agenda entirely, which included the murder of her first husband, pursuant to Hamlet’s accusations (Ham. 3.4.35). While some may argue that Gertrude, like Ophelia, is a powerless, obedient character (“Sample”), the fact that she admits to feeling guilty
It is tempting to condemn Gertrude as evil, but it is probably more sensible to consider her as weak and inconstant. Hamlet's heartfelt line "Frailty, thy name is woman" sums up his view of her actions early in the play. Like many of Shakespeare's women characters, she is "sketched in" rather than drawn in detail. We know that she has a deep affection for her son, which is commented on by Claudius in Act 4 "The Queen, his mother, lives almost by his looks." and we may assume that she has not gone to Claudius's bed unwillingly, although there is a lack of evidence that she returns the King's obsession with her.