To Be Or Not To Be

867 words - 4 pages

In perhaps the most quoted line in all of literature, "To be or not to be" (3.1, line 64), Hamlet contemplates suicide. Hamlet ponders whether he should simply end the sorrows of his life quickly, i.e. suicide, or continue his life and let fortune either alleviate these struggles or continue to add more sorrows.
When we last saw Hamlet, he cursed himself for his lack of resolve and action. He watched an actor weep and moan across the stage in grief for Hecuba, the fallen queen of Troy, whom the actor had no connection to. In the previous act, Hamlet's father appeared to him in the form of a ghost to tell Hamlet that Hamlet's uncle murdered his father then married Hamlet's mother, taking Hamlet's right to the throne as the heir of Denmark in the process. For this reason, Hamlet believes he has a thousand more times a right to be angry and vengeful than this actor does. Yet, Hamlet simply cannot muster the same anger the actor has nor can he devise a plan that will exact revenge for his fallen father. Furthermore, Hamlet is also rather dubious of the claims the ghost makes. Despite his despondent behavior and uncertainty, at the end of his impassioned diatribe against himself Hamlet finally reaches a plan to test the validity of the ghost's assertions. He will stage a play with a plot that mimics the current situation; somehow a king will be murdered by a close relative and that close relative will take the queen as his wife. Hamlet will watch the reaction of Claudius and if Claudius shows a sign of grief, Hamlet's doubt will be relieved and he will murder Claudius. Hamlet at the end of this soliloquy says in a defiant tone, "The play's the thing / Wherein I'll catch the conscience of the King." (Act 2. Sc 2. lines 633-634) Hamlet says this declaratively and with a stern voice; this is his plan of action and he will follow it, no matter what it leads to.
Yet, the next time we see Hamlet he is questioning his very existence. This is not the first time Hamlet has contemplated suicide. In Act one, Scene two, Hamlet cries out in another soliloquy, "Or that the Everlasting had not fixed / His canon 'gainst (self-slaughter!)." (Lines 135-136) Perhaps the best way to describe Hamlet's behavior is erratic. First, he appears inconsolably depressed, then he finds a plan to take action which seems to make him a man with a purpose, a depressed man albeit, but still a man...

Find Another Essay On To be or not to be

To Be or Not To Be Loved

1530 words - 6 pages talks in circles, leading Polonius to believe that Hamlet is truly nuts. Hamlet’s intends to make everyone think that he is crazy so they won’t suspect that he is really out to avenge his father’s death. Ophelia waits for Hamlet to walk by and pretends to be reading a prayer book. Seeing this, Hamlet launches into his most famous soliloquies: To be, or not to be, that is the question: Whether ‘tis nobler in the mind to suffer The

to be or not to be

1047 words - 5 pages Tragic death plays a really big role in William Shakespeare’s Hamlet. Hamlet often considers death in many different perspectives, and definitely obsesses with the idea more so after his fathers’ death. Hamlet’s soliloquy is one of the most famous in literature, “To be or not to be, that is the question…” Hamlet’s dilemma is the pain of life that he must endure or the uncertainty of death. From the beginning of the play to the very last scene

To be, or not to be

1507 words - 6 pages According to Merrion-Webster Inc. Dictionary, a doppelgänger is a double, an often ghostly or evil counterpart to a character. It comes from the German language, doppel- double + -gänger goer. It might be asked, "What does a doppelgänger have to do with a paper on Joseph Conrad?" The answer is a lot, especially if Conrad's "The Secret Sharer" is being discussed. In this short story, the two characters, the captain and Leggatt

To Be Or Not To Be

740 words - 3 pages reenactment of his father’s death in the play will make his uncle squirm in uncomfortableness. That way, Hamlet will have enough proof to be able to see if his uncle is guilty or not and therefore, won’t have any regrets or guilt about killing the man. Hamlet mentions how he wants to capture the conscious of the King and end his life. The third soliloquy from the play Hamlet by William Shakespeare has the theme of life. Hamlet walks in and starts to

Hamlet - To Be Or Not To Be

741 words - 3 pages Shakespeare's "To be, or not to be" speech can be interpreted in many different ways. In the Gibson, Jacobi, and Branagh versions, senses of depression, contemplation, and vengeance were conveyed. All of the emotions represented by the actors were appropriate, given the mental and physical states of Hamlet in the context of the play.In the Mel Gibson version, Hamlet was portrayed as a depressed and suicidal individual. He wore a black, leathery

To Be Or Not To Be Insane

733 words - 3 pages duel. When Hamlet is finally stabbed by Laertes’ poisoned sword, the madness that has plagued him finally proves to be his downfall. Shakespeare’s main character plays both a tragic and ironic character. In his quest to kill the king, the person Hamlet really destroys is himself. He ruins his relationship with Ophelia and his mother, endangers his friends, and kills Laertes and Polonius. As G.K. Chesterton states in his book Orthodoxy, “The madman is not the man who has lost his reason. The madman is the man who has lost everything except his reason.” Clearly, after losing everyone important to him, Hamlet can be nothing but mad.

Humanity of to be or not to be William Shakespeare

2086 words - 8 pages following House Rules are intended to clarify what is and is not acceptable behavior. When in doubt, consider the impact your behavior could have on others or the company as a whole, or ask your Manager.These House Rules will be amended by the employer from time to time as is necessary. Staff will be notified of any changes.Attendance & PunctualityYou are all a part of the LANtech's team. Therefore, to enhance teamwork, all personnel are

Antidepressants for Teens: To Be or Not To Be?

1658 words - 7 pages depression and the age of the patient. The side effects also vary depending on the patient. One source states that, “teenagers on antidepressants should be monitored for any sign that the depression is getting worse” (HelpGuide.Org). Many teens are depressed from causes of neglect. Some may feel that their parents are not around as much as they should be. Depressed teens should be watched closely and if the parent or parents are not available to keep a

Death Penalty, to be or not to be

1775 words - 7 pages violence, and surveys show that they believe swift and harsh punishment is the most appropriate and effective means to these ends.The death penalty, or as it is sometimes being called ' capital punishment ' is the hardest punishment that could be received when a person is convicted of a capital offense. Until recently it did not exist in New York State but after new governor, George Pataki was elected he managed to bring it back. Since September

To Be or Not to Be in the Gange

1486 words - 6 pages To Be or Not To Be In The Gang Tyrone walks into Jefferson High School. To him, the world is out to get him. His folks recently divorced. His dad, the person he absolutely admired and respected, had cheated on his mom. His mom met someone new and she moved herself and the kids in with him. The new boyfriend is ok, but he tries too hard to be nice, and Tyrone wants his old family back together. To make matters even worse, his girlfriend

Decision in Paradise: How To Be or Not To Be

1026 words - 4 pages Kava is an island country in the South Pacific. This island country Kava should be a paradise, but it is not. This country has been devastated by natural disasters such as Tidal waves, Tornadoes, Floods, Fires, Volcanic eruptions, Earthquakes, and HIV/Aids, Petroleum spills and it's a high risk for avian flu. The population is over 50% under the age of 15, and there are many different ethnic groups and religions that are currently in Kava. Since

Similar Essays

Soliloquy: To Be Or Not To Be

1235 words - 5 pages William Shakespeare’s “To be, or not to be” soliloquy delivered by our lead character Hamlet is arguably the most popular soliloquy in all of literature, but is it? The question isn’t if it is the most popular in all of literature, but is it even a true soliloquy? Is it even original thought by Shakespeare? We will examine these questions in greater detail by scrutinizing articles written about these very topics and see if there is any validity

To Be Or Not To Be... King

1285 words - 5 pages truthfully. Hamlet’s characteristic of indecisiveness is the most prevalent in his famous “to be or not to be” (III, i, 67) soliloquy. In his speech, Hamlet struggles with his choices of living or committing suicide. He compares death to sleep when he exclaims, “by a sleep to say we end the heartache, and the thousand natural shocks that flesh is heir to” (III, i, 61-64). At this moment, Hamlet longs to end his miserable life due to his mother’s new

"To Be Or Not To Be".

1191 words - 5 pages Theme: Hamlet is one of the most celebrated tragediesfilled with several different themes and isfull of varying imagery.I. IntroductionII. ThemesA. DeceptionB. RevengeC. Appearance vs. realityD. Ambition and powerE. Disease and poisonIII. DeathIV. ImageryA. MetaphorsB. SimilesC. ImagesV. Conclusion."To Be or Not To Be.'Hamlet is one of Shakespeare's most celebrated tragedies. Written in 1602 during the English civil war, it was first believed a

To Be Or Not To Be Barbie

1935 words - 8 pages and when they are not they are put under a looking-glass and scrutinized for their every imperfection. So it’s no real surprise to me that so many people feel the way they do about their appearance. The only heavier people who are ever represented on television and in the media are said to be the lazy ones, or the ones you should shake your head at. who wouldn't feel pressure? In Piercy’s poem she closed with the lines “In the casket