Corruption in Hamlet by William Shakespeare

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In general terms, corruption is the act of corrupting or of impairing integrity, virtue, or moral principle. In politics, corruption is the misuse of public power and image.Whether it is realized or not, no country is wholly free of the disease of corruption, and if it is allowed to develop and become significantly strong, it can obstruct the good processes of governing and deteriorate the fabric of society. It can become a barrier to continual development and make it so that essentially no room remains for justice to succeed. In Shakespeare’s Hamlet, the destructive force of corruption is clearly exemplified through the abundance of imagery concerning decay, death, disease, sickness, and infection as the play progresses. The first and …show more content…
When the fallen King Hamlet returns as the Ghost to warn Hamlet about the corruption in Elsinore,Hamlet learns the cause of his father’s death: he was murdered at the hand of Claudius by way of poison. The Ghost insists that Hamlet evens the score of his death by killing Claudius and therefore wiping out the foul disease that has taken hold. Contrary to the current state of affairs, under King Hamlet the kingdom of Denmark had been honored and respected and recognized as strong and good.During this time, Denmark could have been compared to a garden that has been looked after and cared for, unlike the “unweeded garden” it became under the sinful rule of Claudius (1.2.139). Marcellus’ comment refers to this and that Claudius is the impetus for the rot of the country. Claudius’ murderous plan, which gave him his new founded power, has begun the infection of the people around him. The Ghost tells Hamlet to “revenge his foul and most unnatural murder” (1.5.31). The image of Claudius’ foul sin of murder is exhibited by the suggestions of physical contagion in the night air. Adjectives such as nasty, rank, blasted, and infected have “powerful connotations of physical evil” and all point to the situation that has befallen the castle (Altick 171).
Shakespeare represents Hamlet as a dignified prince who is attempting to combat the evil and corruption of his world. After the visit from the Ghost, he has come to know and understand what he must do: restore Elsinore to its

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