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Hamlet Theme Paper

1390 words - 6 pages

While reading and analyzing the play of Hamlet it is very clear all of the different themes and lessons Shakespeare is trying to develop. Throughout the story many themes stand out but the biggest one is that revengeful actions never have the best outcome. Shakespeare builds and works on that theme for the duration of the play and that makes this play a revenge tragedy. It is a revenge tragedy because revenge is the most established theme in Hamlet and most of the characters are involved with some type of revenge. Shakespeare enforces this idea by having Hamlet deal with three different revenge stories, all having to do with a son avenging his father. First there is hamlet wanting revenge on Claudius, then Laertes wants revenge on hamlet and last Fortinbras wants revenge on all of Denmark. These three stories all develop and produce the major theme of revengeful actions never having the best outcomes.
The first and most important story of revenge is Hamlet wanting to kill his Uncle Claudius, after Claudius kills Hamlets father. Shakespeare begins the whole idea of revenge very early in the story when the ghost comes and tells Hamlet of what his uncle has done. The ghost first tells Hamlet how his uncle killed the king and then he tells Hamlet to take revenge he says in the play, “Revenge his foul and most unnatural murder.” Hamlet responds with much eager to get revenge saying back to the ghost, “Haste me to know't, that I, with wings as swift As meditation or the thoughts of love, May sweep to my revenge.” It is funny how Hamlet says this because he first of says he wants to get swift revenge then the rest of the play after that Hamlet hesitates to kill Claudius. Shakespeare continues to push the theme of revenge as hamlet continues to falter throughout the story to take revenge he goes back and forth on what he is going to do many times. Young Hamlet is so indecisive about it he starts to convince himself that the ghost could just be an evil spirit misguiding him to kill his uncle and he goes on to say, “The spirit that I have seen may be the devil: and the devil hath power to assume a pleasing shape; yea, and perhaps out of my weakness and my melancholy, as he is very potent with such spirits, abuses me to damn me.” After this Hamlet devises a plan to tell if his uncle is the real killer and he plans a play that reenacts his father’s death to see how Claudius will react. After the play the new king does in fact have a reaction proving his guilt reigniting Hamlets lust for revenge. He then begins to question himself for not being able to do what he needs to and in a soliloquy he reveals how he feels saying, “O, what a rogue and peasant slave am I! Is it not monstrous that this player here,but in a fiction, in a dream of passion,could force his soul so to his own conceitthat from her working all his visage wann'd, tears in his eyes, distraction in's aspect, a broken voice, and his whole function suiting with forms to his conceit? and all for...

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