Hamlet: The Bewildering Human Condition

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Shakespeare’s play Hamlet is a complex and ambiguous public exploration of key human experiences surrounding the aspects of revenge, betrayal and corruption. The Elizabethan play is focused centrally on the ghost’s reoccurring appearance as a symbol of death and disruption to the chain of being in the state of Denmark. The imagery of death and uncertainty has a direct impact on Hamlet’s state of mind as he struggles to search for the truth on his quest for revenge as he switches between his two incompatible values of his Christian codes of honour and humanist beliefs which come into direct conflict. The deterioration of the diseased state is aligned with his detached relationship with all women as a result of Gertrude’s betrayal to King Hamlet which makes Hamlet question his very existence and the need to restore the natural order of kings. Hamlet has endured the test of time as it still identifies with a modern audience through the dramatized issues concerning every human’s critical self and is a representation of their own experience of the bewildering human condition, as Hamlet struggles to pursuit justice as a result of an unwise desire for revenge.

Death threads its way through the entirety of Hamlet, from the opening scene’s confrontation with a dead man’s ghost to the blood bath of the final scene, which occurs as a result of the disruption of the natural order of Denmark. Hamlet is a man with suicidal tendencies which goes against his Christian beliefs as he is focused on the past rather than the future, which causes him to fall into the trap of inaction on his path of revenge. Hamlet’s moral dilemma stems from the ghost’s appearance as “a spirit of health or a goblin damned”, making Hamlet decide whether it brings with...

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