Hamlet's Domination By A Christian World View

1816 words - 7 pages

Hamlet's Domination by a Christian World View

England during the 17th century was a Christian society and country.
All Children would most certainly have been baptised shortly after
birth and once at a suitable age capable of understanding religion
would be taught the essentials of Christian faith. Attendance at
church was compulsory; failure to do so without a good medical reason
or otherwise would lead to a hefty fine. During the 16th century in
England those of Christian faith subsequently despised other races
against that of Protestantism, and any other religion or paranormal
existence that they did not understand. The persecution of Jews within
Elizabethan England meant the state forbade them the rights to
ownership of land or to engage in trade.

Shakespeare showed an incredible understanding and knowledge of issues
and crises of his time, introducing burning issues of today into his
deeply Christian country that showed an inability of understanding and
respecting other faiths and religions.

Within the pre-Elizabethan period and onwards society was influenced
heavily by the head of state, religion and new theoretician's ideas. A
Theocentric world view stated that everything was circled around God,
hence the 'Divine Right of Kings' , which derived itself from this
idea, proclaiming the head of state was put into power due to the
approval and justification of God. This idea generally became
associated with the Christian faith during the Renaissance period of
the late 16th and early 17th centuries which was spreading rapidly
through Europe settling much cultural diversity.

The Renaissance was a time of rebirth and massive cultural turmoil.
Artists and performers of all kinds within Western Europe became more
aware of the classical past and the world beyond the narrow boundaries
of medieval mysticism and religion. Poetry and writing was nonetheless
influenced heavily by the general acceptance to new ideas.

Shakespeare shows that he was conscious of the feudal world within
which he was raised, continuously questioning every aspect of society.
Shakespeare would most definitely be considered to be a 'Renaissance'
or 'Modern Man'. Aristotelian Tragedy would have had some
impressionable effect upon Shakespeare's ideas. He would adopt the
idea that every tragedy must contain a 'Tragic Hero', and that this
person has a fatal flaw that will lead to his eventual downfall (and
death). Also Seneca's tragedies which were finally published in
England in 1581 would have had some effect upon the way in which
Shakespeare would have composed his plays. He adopted many ideas
including, a supernatural being proposing revenge, characters driven
to madness, embedded narratives within the play .etc.

Christianity was not just a religion within 16th century England but a
political pivot...

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