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Hamlet: More Than Just Another Revenge Centered Tragedy

777 words - 4 pages

William Shakespeare’s Hamlet takes place in a Catholic world during medieval times. It tells the story of Hamlet, the prince of Denmark, and his struggle to avenge his father’s death. Hamlet is a very complex character. He is not the typical protagonist that one would expect to see in a tragedy about revenge. Unlike most other characters, Hamlet exhibits the inability to make decisions and act on them. He feels the need to be certain about everything. Hamlet is a tragic hero with a tragic flaw.
Hamlet is not the typical tragedy centered on revenge; it is much deeper than a tragic hero trying to avenge a loved one’s death. Hamlet’s uncle, Claudius, marries his mother, Gertrude, soon ...view middle of the document...

In Hamlet, the tragic hero is Hamlet and his tragic flaw is indecisiveness. In every situation, with the exception of one, Hamlet cannot make a decision. He wants to avenge his father’s death, but he has trouble making a decision. Hamlet fails to take action appropriately; he waits entirely too long. Hamlet almost seems to distrust the idea that it is even possible to act in a controlled, purposeful way. He allows his actions to be affected and delayed by excessive rational considerations, such as the constant need for certainty.
Before taking action, Hamlet searches for certainty. His actions are continually postponed while he tries to obtain more certain knowledge about the problem at hand. It is nearly impossible to be one hundred percent certain about something before taking action. In other words, one can’t postpone action until all information from every perspective is taken into consideration. Sometimes, action is necessary before it is too late, regardless of how much information is known about the situation. Hamlet makes this error several times throughout the tragedy. Because he waits to long to take action, his opportunity is lost.
The one exception in which Hamlet does not fail to take action is when he murders Polonius. This action opposes every...

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