Hamlet Character Analysis

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In William Shakespeare’s Hamlet, one often wonders what Hamlet’s tragic flaw is? Was it his anger, his passion, his own feigned madness taking control? Perhaps they played a part, but Prince Hamlet’s inability/hesitation to act, and his tendency towards rash actions are the tragic flaws that lead inevitably to his own demise. He is no Macbeth, Othello, or Oedipus for sure! Ironically, the combination of these two polar opposite traits, Hamlet's hesitation and sudden rash actions, lead to his downfall. As William James puts it “There is no more miserable human being than one in whom nothing is habitual but indecision”, and yet when Hamlet acts instead of thinking it bodes ill anyways! For Hamlet’s case there is nothing but misery.
His first step into the pit of no return comes in the form of a poltergeist in the image of his father, wherein Hamlet is told that his father’s murderer is none other than his brother Claudius, the new King of Denmark after the quick marriage to the widowed queen. In the case of other tragic heroes the news would have caused blood to boil and blood to spill, yet Hamlet takes this news and thinks it over, for it could be a “couple” with “hell” (1.5.93). Was the ghost one of good intentions or one of malice, for ghost could be of either heaven or hell? So hamlet had to know if this was a "spirit of health or goblin damned" (1.4.5). Hamlet doesn’t know for sure so he devises an idea to portray himself as mad to find out if the ghost was speaking the truth. This, of course, is another mistake.
In choosing to put himself into this state of mind, acting it may be, he is allowing himself to become part of Uncle Claudius’s “unweeded garden that grows to seed” that has “rotten in the state of Denmark” (1.2.135-1...

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...villain send
To heaven” (3.3.73-78).
He clearly wants Claudius to suffer in hell like he believes that his father is from what the ghost stated, “for a day confined to fast in fires, till the foul crimes done in my days in future” (1.5.11-12). If only he had had the courage to slay his uncle and take the chance that his soul would go to heaven, perhaps the bloodshed at the end of the play would have never happened.
So “what is it in Hamlet's extremely complex nature that must come to the surface” to make him a great tragic hero even though Hamlet does not overcome his indecisiveness or rashness (Jorgensen). He is openly flawed and maybe that’s why he did not carry the disdain most have for revenge tragedy protagonist, for he is truer than any other hero. Perhaps that is why it is so tragic that a man with just intentions is flawed by his own thoughts and actions.
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