Motif of Madness in Hamlet by William Shakespeare
It is the driving force of mankind that has delivered man from the age of stone to that of industry. This force is also the essential ingredient that produces the inescapable prison of the mind, a frightful disease that may be viewed as the greatest irony of life. Pain is a dreadful disease in which every individual has felt the everlasting effects. The grief of pain can become a crashing wave that leaves behind only a semblance of sanity in its wake. For in thinking there is both life and death. Trapped inside the prison of his mind, chained by a grief consciousness served only to torture him, Hamlet, the Prince of Denmark, reveals to the world his methods of dealing with pain. Hamlet was a well-developed character in which his rapid and unorthodox decision making lead others to believe his was insane. In Shakespeare's, The Tragedy of Hamlet, the playwright utilizes the motif of madness to help depict that appearances are deceptive.
Hamlet, the young prince of Denmark loses his father at an early age. Ever since this tragic event occurred, Hamlet was perceived as a troubled individual in a state of madness, a type of madness that develops into insanity. Hamlet presents many clues that in fact he appears to be insane. William Shakespeare does an outstanding job in leading the reader to believe that in fact, Hamlet is insane. "Why, then, 'tis none to you: for there is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so: to me it is a prison. (Hamlet II. ii. 252-254).
Hamlet displays his indecisiveness while talking to Guildenstern and Rosencrantz. He tells them about the prison in which his mind battles. After the murder of his father, Hamlet begins to question everyone around him. Throughout the entire play Hamlet is careful with his actions. He thinks everything through. Although he delayed his actions longer then Laertes, he planned all his actions out, instead of acting out in a fit of rage. He had to be completely sure before acting. Hamlet was completely aware of his actions and what was morally correct.
Hamlet never lost sight of his objective to expose the King's sin of murdering his father and obtaining revenge. Hamlet was completely sane throughout the tragedy. When Hamlet began to put the pieces of his father's murder together, he paid special attention to his uncle Claudius. "It is not very strange; for my uncle is King of Denmark, and those that would make mows at him while my father lived, give twenty, forty, fifty, a hundred ducats a-piece for his picture in little. 'Sblood, there is something in this more than natural, if philosophy could find it out. (II. ii. 366-371). Hamlet knows that his uncle is the murderer. Claudius further makes it difficult to uncover the truth by announcing that Hamlet is next in line for the throne of Denmark. Shakespeare shows the theme of appearances is deceptive by having Claudius appear to exhibit some...