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Hamlet by William Shakespeare Analysis Essay example

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I Corinthians 13:4-7, says that “love is patient, love is kind…It does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered …it always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.” True love would never violate any of these truths. Yet, some would like to believe that in Shakespeare’s play Hamlet, Hamlet truly loved Ophelia and only pretended to view her as a trifle. However, how can Hamlet truly have admired Ophelia if he treated her with such disgrace and nonchalance? Because of the way he handles her throughout the play, his attentions to her appear to spawn more out of entertainment than out of affection. Because of Hamlet’s disregard for kindness, his inability to provide comfort for Ophelia, his ambitious motives for treating her poorly, and his nonchalance when speaking to her, Hamlet proves through his actions that he never truly loved Ophelia, yet used her for mere gain.
Regardless of whether Hamlet had feigned insanity, he would have never been so unkind to Ophelia and her father if he had really loved her. Whenever Polonius wishes to speak to Hamlet and ascertain his emotions, Hamlet asks him if he has a daughter. When he replies that indeed he does, Hamlet advises Polonius to “let her not walk i’th’ sun” (2.2.184). Though, Polonius perceives this statement as advice not to allow Ophelia to walk in public, Hamlet clearly means that Ophelia should not listen to or follow her father. She should not walk in the sun—her father’s light. No one who truly loves someone else will insult her family, especially not her mother or father. Hamlet would have respected Polonius. He even degrades Polonius when speaking to Ophelia. When Hamlet asks her where her fathe...


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...reated her poorly to appear more insane; but, what kind of love would include belittling someone for gain? He never even put weight in what she said. Even if she had no mind to think for herself, Hamlet would not have cared if he truly loved her. Hamlet’s so-called affections for Ophelia were just that—so-called and nonexistent.



Works Cited

Jameson, Anna. “Ophelia.” Shakespeare's Heroines: Characteristics of Women, Moral, Poetical and Historical. London : George Bell and Sons, 1891. Web. 3 February 2014.
Lycee, Jean. “Hamlet’s Love for Ophelia.” Danielle.Esposito.index. Web. 3 February 2014.
Martin, Helena. Shakespeare's Female Characters. Blackwood and Sons, Edinburgh, 1888. Web. 1 February 2014.
New International Version Bible. Ed. Zondervan. New York: Doubleday, 1985. Print.
Shakespeare, William. Hamlet. Oxford University Press: 1992. Print.



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