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Hamlet And Humanism Essay

1176 words - 5 pages

Hamlet and Humanism
William Shakespeare, Hamlet, demonstrates human nature to be gluttonous, self-involved and merciless. Claudius is determined by his greed to commit murder. Polonius is always watching out for himself, without a care of the expense of anyone that gets in his way. Hamlet ponders only of retaliation from the second he finds out about Claudius murdered his father. Human nature has been several things throughout time, but it has also changed throughout the years. People can be immoral and cruel, but they can also show great empathy and kindness.
Renaissance humanism scholars recognize that “Hamlet contains a vital critique of humanism” (Renaissance) throughout the play. The author, William Shakespeare, was from a period of Elizabethan age that “coincided with the culminating period of humanistic literary expression” (Renaissance). Shakespeare’s surroundings at that time period help shape his views and thoughts of the politics that were happening all around him. Shakespeare took from his own human responses and interactions and intertwined them into Hamlet.
Claudius “is the most modern character” that “has no reservations” (Hamlet, Tragedy) when he murders his own brother so that he may gain the crown and the queen. He removes of a great and honorable king to please his greed. He removes his brother, the good of the country, and the pleasure of many to satisfy his own ambition. Claudius only cares about himself. Realizing it or not, most individuals, at one point or another, will be motivated by gluttony. Most, however, will not have the willpower and anxiety that Claudius shows. This is partially because of the alterations of the times. In the historical time that Shakespeare wrote the play, killing was profoundly scowled upon as it is now. Greediness is in all people. People seek the things they want and cannot have, and they try to justify to themselves that they are entitled this is. It is unavoidable, but people can try and control it to a certain point.
The pledge between father and daughter is something that some consider revered. Polonius uses this promise with Ophelia to please Claudius and Gertrude in discovery out what is wrong with Hamlet. Polonius also acquires his daughter to stop courting Hamlet by ordering her to instead of allowing her to decide for herself. He is looking out for his daughter. The King and Queen were very troubled at Hamlet’s superficial insanity. They tell Rosencrantz and Guildenstern that discovery of what is hypocritical with Hamlet would be “the supply and profit of our hope “(Hamlet 2.2.24). They are noticeably embittered at his behavior, and Polonius knows this, and tries to use his daughter to demonstrate his notion. When Ophelia approached and pronounced to him her get-together with Hamlet in Act I, Polonius instantaneously brought her to the King. Polonius, performing on his duty to “both God and to gracious king” (Hamlet 2.2.45) took Ophelia to Claudius to understand if he could be any...

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