William Shakespeare's Hamlet Essay

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William Shakespeare's Hamlet

Hamlet has been praised and revered for centuries as one of William Shakespeare's best known and most popular tragedies. Based on its popularity, critics alike have taken various viewpoints and theories in order to explain Hamlet's actions throughout the play. The psychoanalytic point of view is one of the most famous positions taken on Hamlet.

Psychoanalytic criticism is a type of literary criticism that analyzes and classifies many of the forms of psychoanalysis in the interpretation of literature. As the Concise Oxford Dictionary defines psychoanalysis, as a form of therapy that is concluced ‘by investigating the interaction of conscious and unconscious elements in the mind' (Barry 96).
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To a /nunn'ry, go, and quickly too" (3.1.136-139). At this part in the play, it is extremely difficult for Hamlet to differentiate between his mother and Ophelia. Therefore, making his true feelings for his mother become more obscure.

When Hamlet's father dies and his mother re-marries, the independency of the idea of sexuality with his mother, concealed since infancy, can no longer be hid from his consciousness. Emotions which were favorable and pleasing at infancy are now emotions of abhorrence and disgust because of his repressions (Jones). In the beginning of the play he becomes extremely derisive and contemptuous to his mother. "Seems, madam? Nay, it is, I know not "seems." (1.2.76). When Hamlet says this, he is mocking his mother's question about why he is still mourning his father's death. Ironically, out of the love he still has for his mother, he yields her request to remain at the court.

The long "repressed" need to take his father's place, by gaining his mother's devotion is first stimulated to unconscious activity by the marriage of his mother to Claudius. Claudius has usurped the position of husband to Gertrude, a position that Hamlet had once longed for. The fact that Claudius was not only the victor o fhis mother's affections, but also his uncle, aggravated the situation. Their incestuous marriage thus resembles Hamlet's imaginary idea of having a

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