For most of the play, Hamlet does indeed pretend to be mad. The audience can understand that Hamlet is only pretending because Shakespeare leaves clues in characters’ lines. For example, when Hamlet first speaks to Polonius in act II, scene ii, Hamlet appears to be truly insane. Hamlet mistakes Polonius for a “fishmonger” and answers Polonius irrationally, saying, “For if the sun breed maggots in a dead dog, being a good kissing carrion…” (II.ii.190; 197-198). Although Hamlet seems to be talking about nonsense, Polonius remarks on “how pregnant his replies sometimes are” (II.ii.226-227). If Hamlet were truly mad in this case, he would not be able to have so much meaning in his words. Hamlet acknowledges that he is feigning madness when he says, “I am but mad north-north-west. When the wind is southerly, I know a hawk from a handsaw” (II.ii.402-403). It is clear that Hamlet is using madness intentionally in most of the play.
Claudius pretends to be innocent is in the beginning of the play when he first assumes the kingship after King Hamlet’s death. Claudius feigns a lamentation on th...
... middle of paper ...
...ause he refuses to relinquish all that he gained from pretending to be innocent. Claudius says, “…I am still possessed / Of those effects for which I did the murder: / My crown, mine own ambition, and my queen. / May one be pardoned and retain th’ offense?” (III.iii.57-60). Because Claudius gained so much from acting innocent, he fails to truly repent for the murder of King Hamlet.
Both Hamlet and Claudius act impeccably during the play; the other characters are unable to tell that they are acting. However, Hamlet does not act mad throughout the play because he is truly mad, to a degree. They both use acting to get what they want, but when Claudius tries to stop acting and truly become innocent, he is unable. Shakespeare does this purposefully in order to show that Hamlet is a more honorable character than Claudius is because he is more genuine than Claudius is.
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- Although it is hard to fully discuss acting methods that we have only touched on in class through brief workshops and discussions, and although it seemed, at times, that the distinctions between a few of the methods were rather vague, I nonetheless have an idea of certain tools hat will help my acting and in which circumstances specific tools would prove most useful; most of the techniques we explored offered at least some sort of benefit—Adler, Hagen, Chekhov, Meisner, and even Strasburg had illustrative insights—and the workshops we worked with during the Hedda discussions also were helpful.... [tags: Reflection]
1684 words (4.8 pages)
- At one point in time, southern reality television programs focused on what is known as “southern hospitality,” but in the recent years have strayed away from this concept to show viewers the negative stereotypes of the South. On one hand, the South represents graciousness, harmony, and easy living. On the other hand, the South is full of violence, hatred, cruelty, and ignorance. Persistent and curious infatuation with reality television is dangerous because it continues to extend the negative stereotypes associated with the people of the South.... [tags: Television, Reality television, Television program]
928 words (2.7 pages)
- I have an interest and passion for Religious Studies and wish to pursue a degree in Religion to further develop my knowledge, ambition and understanding which I will eventually carry on to a PGCE qualification. By studying Religion and Ethics at GCSE I became fascinated in various world faiths and how religious beliefs affect attitudes, lifestyle and behaviour; this influenced my A' Level choice and at A' Level I have particularly enjoyed the study of Judaism and Buddhism at a much deeper level.... [tags: Personal Reflection]
641 words (1.8 pages)
- All forms of art contain lies in some manner or another. This is so because humans often only regard their reality as the truth and all other realities as lies. Many refer to art as a reflection of life, while the counterclaim that life reflects art receives equal support. In either case, one of the aspects is “true”, while the other is “a lie”. This is such because the piece that is a reflection of the other is the one that is a lie; if art is reflecting life, and then art is a lie about life, whereas if life is reflecting art, then life is a lie about art.... [tags: Theatre, Acting, Satire, Social Criticism]
1038 words (3 pages)
- Teaching Critical Reflection The ability to reflect critically on one’s experience, integrate knowledge gained from experience with knowledge possessed, and take action on insights is considered by some adult educators to be a distinguishing feature of the adult learner (Brookfield 1998; Ecclestone 1996; Mezirow 1991). Critical reflection is the process by which adults identify the assumptions governing their actions, locate the historical and cultural origins of the assumptions, question the meaning of the assumptions, and develop alternative ways of acting (Cranton 1996).... [tags: Education Educational Essays]
2185 words (6.2 pages)
- Within Frankenstein is a world divided between the egotistical ideas of a mad man and the monster that is created through his insanity: in Lacanian terms, between the Symbolic and the Imaginary Orders. According to Lacan, “the Imaginary [is a] field of images and imagination, and deception” (Wikepedia.org ); Victor’s imagination being reflected solely on the monster that is created by his own guilty hands. To Victor, his creation reflects the idea and ego that cultivate through him, it is the spark that takes the ordinary and turns him into the “alienated.” While Victor imagines himself to be a part of society, he soon comes to realize how his work has instead done the opposite, sheltering... [tags: Literacy Analysis ]
1096 words (3.1 pages)
- A disturbing thought about man’s ethical barometer is that most of the theories, categories and principles emanate from the point of man’s reason. There is a cause to shudder at the thought of man as the absolute authority of what is right and wrong; what is ethical and what is not. Born into a sinful nature, man will ultimately make decisions that will lead to a moral philosophy that is shaky at best. Even philosophers with the best of intentions fall short to God’s model for the order, organization, and meting out of ethical actions.... [tags: Ethical Barometer, Categories, Principles]
1433 words (4.1 pages)
- Confidence takes people down the right road, a road they will not want to escape, a road that is not petrified or petrifying, and a road with a positive reflection of life. Revolutionary Road, a fiction novel by Richard Yates, is a skillfully written tragedy based upon a society in Western Connecticut where life appears quite dull on Revolutionary Road. The Wheeler and Campbell families all include members who lack confidence, a characteristic having been aborted at an early age or during tough situations.... [tags: Richard Yates, literary analysis]
1442 words (4.1 pages)
- Shakespeare examines the theme of appearance and reality in his book-Hamlet. The dilemma of what is "real" is established at the very beginning of the play. Hamlet doesn’t know what to believe and devises a plan to find out. The old king Hamlet appears to be bitten by a snake, but in reality he was poisoned, the ghost appears as an apparition, but it’s actually real, and the play-with-in-a-play strongly depicts the theme of appearance vs. reality. The dead King appears to have been bitten by a snake.... [tags: essays research papers]
900 words (2.6 pages)
- The Reflection of J. B. Priestley's Political and Philosophical Beliefs in An Inspector Calls In 1945 J. B. Priestley wrote the play "An Inspector Calls". It is a very tense play; the audience are always on the edge of their seats. It is didactic as it conveys a social and moral meaning to the play. The play has naturalistic conversation all the way through, to make it seem real, like you could be there. But it also has surreal elements; for example; the inspectors name is Inspector Goole.... [tags: Papers]
1339 words (3.8 pages)