To begin with, Ophelia is a character from the Shakespeare classic Hamlet. She is perceived as a young woman who is kind hearted and obedient towards the male characters within the story. These characteristics cause her to be seen as the victim of the male characters who revolve around the story of Hamlet.
Denmark is in a state of chaos shown by the opening death of the true
During the reign of Queen Elizabeth, the stage was used as a way to break the barriers of gender norms. In his creation of Hamlet, Shakespeare uses the voice of Ophelia as a means to battle the gender norms that had been placed on Elizabethan society. A good women was seen as someone that was quiet and submissive. If a man could not control a woman’s tongue, there would be no chance that the man would be able to control her body. Though Ophelia’s character was more than capable of exhibiting reason, the control that her father, Polonius, held over her let Ophelia to the the madness that would claim her life by the end of the play. On the other side of the gender spectrum, Hamlet, a prince that should be have been more than capable of
From historical events such as World War I and World War II to present day women have been playing prominent roles. During the 14th and 15th centuries women had no important roles in their families, they were only used to take care of their families and to use their body for sex for men. A women mostly always needed a man by her side to stay stable and strong, otherwise they are known to be weak without them.
Shakespeare's Hamlet is a tale of mortal revenge, lost souls, love and infidelity, and murder in the royal family. Hamlet, his father having recently died, is mourning the marriage of his mother to his uncle. When his father's ghost appears to him and tells him he must avenge the former king's spirit so that it may pass on to Heaven, he decides to put on an "antic disposition" so that no one will know what he is thinking. As time goes by, he cannot move himself to act upon his revenge and is tormented by his indecisiveness and ineptitude. Among all of this, what is the role of Ophelia, the young maiden, and daughter of the King's advisor, Hamlet's former sweetheart? She seems to appear out of
Ophelia is considered one of the most difficult roles to play in Hamlet due to the character’s strong possession of obscurity. She was torn between the dilemma of whether to listen to her father and brother that Hamlet would leave her or whether to trust her heart and instinct and devote herself to Hamlet. Ophelia’s family believed her to be the eternal virgin and the vessel of morality who had the purpose to become a dutiful wife and devoted mother – they strongly believed Hamlet would only take her virginity and destroy all her opportunity and life potential. To Hamlet, Ophelia was a sexual object had no worth or potential of becoming his wife. In her heart she was convinced he loved her, although Hamlet was adamant he never did.
In the tragic play Hamlet, written by William Shakespeare, one of the most common themes found throughout the story’s plot is the theme of love. Shakespeare interlaces many layers of thematic love through the complex relationships of Hamlet; primarily between Hamlet and Ophelia. From Act one until the final scene of the play, Hamlet struggles with the decision to kill Claudius while he concurrently tries to comprehend the chaos surrounding him. As the story unfolds and the tensions build between Hamlet and his loved ones, Hamlet’s relationship to Ophelia is profoundly impacted. One common argument that rises from studying the tragic story of Hamlet is the questioning of
For the past few weeks Level four English has been reading Hamlet for the 450th anniversary of Shakespeare. Recently we attend Hamlet screening in HD at the Lake Placid Center of the Arts (LPCA). Both In the reading and the actual play the character that changed the most was very similar, the main character, Ophelia.
Michael Pennington in “Ophelia: Madness Her Only Safe Haven,” elucidates the character of Ophelia in Shakespeare’s tragedy, Hamlet:
The play Hamlet, by William Shakespeare, looks at the issue of madness and how it effects the characters of the play. Madness can be looked at from very different perspectives, such as strong and uncontrollable emotions, a person’s desires, and also a persons mental stability. Throughout the play, the audience is questioning the sanity of the main character, Hamlet, as he goes on his quest for revenge. The people around him also show signs of madness, such as Ophelia and Claudius, but in different forms. Existentialist philosopher Friedrich Nietzche says, “There is always some madness in love. But there is also some reason in madness.” What Nietzche is saying is that when you are in love with someone or something, there is always a little
Polonius, Ophelia’s father, embodies the theories the Other and a lack of female agency while discussing with Ophelia a similar case to her brother. In act 1 scene 3 of Hamlet, Polonius decides to inform Ophelia of the same matters that Laertes provides her. While Ophelia is departing from sending off her brother, Polonius asks Ophelia what her and her brother were discussing, resulting in her receiving unsolicited advice from her father on how to handle Hamlet’s sexual and romantic advances. Polonius states, “Tender yourself more dearly / Or … / you’ll tender me a fool.” (1.3.107-109). What he is stating here is that if Ophelia does not respect herself and succumbs to Hamlet’s lustful actions, Polonius will be painted as a fool. Similar to Laertes disccusion, Polonius’s comment to Ophelia marks the notion that Ophelia cannot be respected if she operates in sexual endeavors. This idea represents Balizet’s notion that women’s sexuality is a patriarchal standard and also represents de Beauvoir’s notion that a woman is not sexual unless with a man. However, there is a deeper standard that is portrayed by Polonius that is a necessity to address. In the quote provided above, Polonius discusses that his respect will be lost as well if Ophelia acts on lust because he is her father. This form of selfishness that is represented within Polonius’s speech supports de Beauvoir’s theory that women are thought of to be as the Other of men. Polonius’s anxiety of loss of respect for himself
“The dramatic life of any play often emerges from what is not said rather than what is.” What this quote means to me is that the information that is not presented or explicitly stated in the text itself is the much more important to the dramatic story rather than the information that is stated in the text. I do agree with this quote because it is true, especially in Hamlet. For example, in Hamlet, we as the reader assume that Ophelia kills herself even though the text never says the Ophelia kills herself. Instead Gertrude enters the scene and explains that Ophelia’s death in a beautiful matter saying that she drowned in the brook. Once Gertrude makes this announcement, Ophelia’s death causes dramatic rise when many people learn that Ophelia has died, especially Laertes who is outraged by the death of his sister.
Today women all across the globe suffer at the hands of their male counterparts. Faced with discrimination, prejudice, and hate, they are forced into a life of unquestioning obedience and servitude. Unfortunately this concept is not of new occurrence. In fact, it has been the case for hundreds of years. This idea is well demonstrated in William Shakespeare’s Hamlet, through the characterization of young Ophelia. As Shakespeare tells the dramatic story of Hamlet’s incestuous and corrupt family, Ophelia seems to often be cast aside and forgotten. She is subjected to much emotional abuse as she undergoes sexualization, harassment and manipulation at the hands not only her love Hamlet, but from her own father, Polonius. It is these injustices and her dependence on the men to run her life, that ultimately lead to her untimely death.
In Hamlet, many relationships are left to interpretation to the audience. Why did Hamlet not kill Claudius immediately? Does Hamlet secretly want to get with his mother after killing the king? Is the ghost real? One of the biggest questions is: does Hamlet love Ophelia? Throughout the play, their relationship is presented to show Hamlet is simply trying to use her for sex, however, there are many situations used to back up the theory that Hamlet did in fact love her. Shakespeare reveals to the audience in the beginning of act 5 as to what could be Hamlet's true feelings, he was in love with her.
"Though this be madness, yet there is method in 't." (Shakespeare). The King of Denmark has died and his brother Claudius has taken over his throne. The guardsmen come across a ghostly apparition, which looks a lot like the dead King Hamlet. Horatio, one of the guards informs Hamlet and he meets the apparition and finds out it is his father. Hamlet is then told that Claudius murdered his father with ear poison while he was sleeping. Hamlet delays his revenge because of uncertainty and starts acting half mad, because of this Polonius; an advisor to the King mistakes it to be lovesickness. As everyone rushes to figure out what is wrong with him. Hamlet invites an acting troupe to trick Claudius into confessing. Claudius runs from the room and in doing which proves his guilt. When Hamlet goes to talk to his mother Gertrude he accidentally kills Polonius. To avoid his persecution Claudius sends Hamlet to England, but secretly plans his execution. Laertes has a duel with Hamlet trying to kill him and as backup Claudius has put poison in a cup of wine. Ophelia is driven by grief and commits suicide by drowning. During the match, Gertrude drinks from the poisoned cup of wine before anyone can stop her. Laertes then wounds Hamlet with the poisoned blade, but in the fight, they exchange swords and Hamlet wounds Laertes. Afterwards, Hamlet proceeds to kill Claudius. As he is dying, he hears the drums of Fortinbras's army and says Fortinbras will be the next King