Is it possible for our emotions to lead us to a state of psychological haze? Do our emotions over power our minds to think in a non-analytical way? In Hamlet, a play written by William Shakespeare, the protagonist, Hamlet, acts on his emotions to seek the vengeance of his father’s death. Hamlet wants to see himself as noble, but he gets too deep into his emotions and loses his rational way of thinking. Throughout Hamlet, Hamlet’s emotion of loosing his father lead him to a psychological state and brought misfortune to his kingdom. Hamlet demonstrates how our emotion plays a role in our ability to think logically.
In the beginning act of Hamlet, the main character Hamlet is dealing with the death of his father. A ghost appears to Hamlet and claims to be his father. The ghost tells Hamlet to set out and seek revenge on Claudius, Hamlet’s uncle, who was said to have kilt Hamlet’s father, the ghost( I.v.10-90). Hamlet is ...view middle of the document...
He spots Claudius praying and talks himself out of his “act of nobility” by saying that Claudius will go to heaven if he is slain (III.iii.73-83). Hamlet wants Claudius to die in the same state of drunkenness as his father had died when he was poisoned.
Hamlet is emotionally confused; he doesn’t want to commit an act of justice that he isn’t sure about. Hamlet wants to believe that the ghost is his father, but ultimately he doesn’t know what to believe. Hamlet acknowledges the fact that he may have been fooled by the ghost. “The spirit that I have seen/May be the devil, and the devil hath power/T’assume a pleasing shape”(II.ii.448-550). What causes Hamlet to continue his acts to seek revenge if he thinks that he has been bamboozled by the devil?
Although Hamlet isn’t sure of this ghost and who it really is; he believes that the actions of Claudius makes him a guilty man. In the struggle of trying to rationalize his vendetta, Hamlet seeks an easy way out to not fulfill this. In his soliloquy, “To be or not to be”, Hamlet battles between committing murder or committing suicide (III.I.57-83) Hamlet felt trapped in having to do something that he didn’t really want to do. Hamlet’s emotional investment to seek revenge for his father causes his irrational thinking of suicide. Peter Michaelson says that, “The feeling of being helpless is a universal emotional experience amongst people with either fleeting or persistent thoughts of suicide” (“A Hidden Reason for Suicidal Thoughts”).
Despite Hamlet’s thoughts of suicide he presumes in his vendetta. Hamlet’s emotions have gotten the best of him and from that specific moment his rational way of thinking has been displaced. We witnessed this when Hamlet slays Polonius, chief counselor of the king. What makes this moment so significant into Hamlet’s emotional stability is prior to him being hesitant to kill and then essentially killing Polonius with no hesitation. Hamlet is nor remorseful or mournful of Polonius death. In this moment the change is noticeable change within Hamlet. His sensitive, pondering nature, that interfered with his ability to take vengeance on Claudius, has now vanish in the wake of the very opposite.