As Shakespeare wrote Hamlet, the fiction was set in the Renaissance era and therefore the persona of women was reflective of that period. The natural stereotype of that time viewed women as weak, fickle, and dependent of the men in their society and subject to the decisions that men make for them. It was an exceedingly common depiction and very rarely was it proven wrong to the men of that time. Women’s rights were nonexistent in this time period so it wasn’t unusual for the portrayal of women to be so negative and offensive. Given that women of that age had known nothing else they attempted to fit the stereotype to please the ‘natural order’.
If women were the ones to have power over men, it would change the plot completely. Gertrude wouldn’t have even considered marrying Claudius, Hamlet would not seek revenge, and Ophelia would be the one playing with Hamlet's mind. In all, since this is a fictitious story, Shakespeare is to blame for this horrid portrayal of women. In reality, women weren’t as dependent on men as the play states. They were obedient, but they wouldn’t so insane and drown themselves if their father died.
Ophelia is losing Hamlet’s trust due to her dependency on Polonius and Claudius when she shares Hamlet’s private love letters with Polonius and obeying his advice to stay away from Hamlet. Moreover, Ophelia even plays a part in the plan to test Hamlet to see if he is insane just because the king and her father ask her to, not caring how would Hamlet feel. Because of these reasons,Hamlet is telling Ophelia that nunnery is the only place where she will be faithful and cause the least amount of damage. This quote also conveys a theme of betrayal in the play, where Ophelia betrays her true love, Hamlet.Therefore, the attitude towards woman in the Elizabethan era is the reason why Ophelia betrays Hamlet . After her father’s death, Ophelia emotionally goes mad and sings, “He is dead and gone, lady, He is dead and gone.
This allowed her to only accept her father’s views that Hamlet’s attention towards her was only to take advantage of her and to obey her father’s orders not to permit Hamlet to see her again. Hamlet has the disillusion that women are frail after his mother’s rushed remarriage as shown by “Frailty, thy name is woman!” He also believes women do not have the power to reason. (“O God, a beast that wants discourse of reason.”) Ophelia has the power to change his view but her unexplained rejection of him only adds to Hamlet’s disillusion. The ghost’s revelation that Gertrude dishonored Hamlet’s father but also their marriage by the adultery with Claudius is contemplated by Hamlet until he goes into Ophelia’s room to look upon her. As Hamlet searches Ophelia’s face for some sign that might restore his faith in her, he instead believes her face shows guilt and thinks she is another false Gertrude.
Furthermore he shows us how Beatrice is perhaps a threat to the patriarchal society at the time, we can see this on page fifty-nine where she implys that it is her duty to please herself, whether or not her father consents. This is unlike Hero, who cannot do anything unless a man is fighting her corner, however Beatrice is willing to do what she believes is necessary to achieve what she wants... ... middle of paper ... ...e down by weeping. Shakespeare shows us that Beatrice is the only character despite some of these positive attributes of Beatrice’s character, she is very rude about men. She says ‘but manhood is melted into curtsies’ showing Benedick her lack of respect towards men. However it is possibly her refreshing honesty that leads her to be a positive role model.
She tells Ophelia about her hope that Hamlet 's madness came from his love for Ophelia. If Gertrude keeps believing this, she won 't have to face the marriage as the problem or feel guilty. Gertrude 's romantic outlook again keeps her from seeing truth. Because of Hamlet 's powerful belief in his mother 's guilt, he takes his anger out on Ophelia, who Hamlet may think is just another insincere woman like his mother. Hamlet is determined to use the play to get at his mother 's conscience in addition to Claudius '.
This honesty is taken as insult by Lear in the opening act of the play, and he renounces the princess in a fit of rage. Yet when his other, more "glib and oily (I.i. 224)" daughters have ruined him, it is faithful Cordelia who comforts him. While she has the greatest reason to act against Lear, she claims she has "No cause,(IV,iv,74)" to do so. What is it within Cordelia's soul that manifests good in the face of evil?
‘Othello’ highlights the gender roles that are placed on men and women during Shakespeare’s time. Symbolising Desdemona as an obedient wife to Othello, Shakespeare illustrates the lack of freedom women had, oppressed by the culture that is practiced that restricts women making them feel remorseful for defending themselves from dominant male figures. The dishonour Desdemona perceives from Othello’s misdirected rage, evokes her to feel not worthy of the role as his wife. As outspoken women were looked down upon during the Elizabethan era, Desdemona felt that she would further anger Othello if she were to be disrespectful. Desdemona represents the vulnerability women felt when standing for their rights in the late 1600’s, being overpowered by the community’s destructive attitudes and behaviours against them.
Ophelia’s actions show that she will do anything to appease her father, even doing things that she doesn’t necessarily want to do. “Get thee to a nunnery!” (Act III, scene i) Hamlet mocks Ophelia using this quote and commands her to go to a covenant rather than give birth to more sinners. In this scene Hamlet goes on to mock women and society in general for buying into the whole idea of marriage and true love. Hamlet insults Ophelia's father and argues that married men are fools and marriage should not exist. Hamlet accuses Ophelia and all of womankind for being deceitful and unfaithful.
As the daughter of Polonius, she only speaks in the company of several men, or directly to her brother or father. Since we never see her interactions with women, she suppresses her own thoughts in order to please her superiors. Yet however weak and dependent her character is on the surface, Ophelia is a cornerstone to the play’s progression. One way that her manipulation is key to Hamlet’s plot is when Polonius orders her “in plain terms, from this time forth/ Have you so slander any moment leisure/As to give words or talk with the Lord Hamlet,” (1.3.131-133). She complies with his wishes, agreeing to return any tokens of Hamlet’s love to him, verify t... ... middle of paper ... ...course, ultimately infuriates and intensifies his urge for revenge.