preview

Symbolism of Rot in Hamlet by William Shakespeare

Good Essays
The human condition can be a breeding ground for beauty or it can fester into nefarious and disgust. In the dramatic production of Hamlet, Shakespeare gave the theme of rot to illustrate a corrupt state of Denmark. Shakespeare created a tragedy to arouse fear and pity in the audience to relate the the fears in their life and to pity the victims of injustice. The tragic play is set in the Kingdom of Denmark and explores the revenge Prince Hamlet wants on his uncle Claudius for murdering King Hamlet his father and former King. Claudius then succeeds to the throne and takes his wife Gertrude, the old King's widow and Prince Hamlet's mother. William Shakespeare developed Hamlet as a character who procrastinates a key decision to seek revenge on his uncle. Hamlet disrespects the women closest to him and manipulates them along with his friends to achieve his desire for revenge. The play portrays fear, madness, and uncontrolled rage and also explores the depths of incest, revenge, and corruption. It is evident that Hamlet's disrespect towards women, manipulative action, and lack of decisive action cause an even more rotten and corrupt Denmark.

Women and love play a strong and important role in the play Hamlet. Shakespeare created the main character Hamlet to hide his true emotions by directing them toward the women in his life. Hamlet lies and manipulates Ophelia into thinking that she has broken his heart by not loving him back and leads the other characters in the play to think the same. Hamlets writes a letter to Ophelia, “O dear Ophelia, I am ill at these numbers. I have not art/ to reckon my groans. But I love thee best, O most/ believe it. Adieu” (II.ii.119-121). Hamlet writes about his love for Ophelia, but his true desires ar...

... middle of paper ...

...and Denmark by destroying the corrupt and murderous King, but by procrastinating, he had to watch his country rot.

In the play Hamlet, Hamlet can be seen as the sole reason for the corrupt and rotten place that Denmark has become. Shakespeare introduces the audience to Hamlet as a loved and innocent prince who is mourning the death of his father. As the play progresses, Hamlet changes to a person who battles himself with key decisions and only thinks to serve himself. Hamlet is seen to have little respect for women resulting in him using broken love for Ophelia to cover up his plan to murder Claudius. Shakespeare also creates Hamlet to have a hamartia which is an inability to act leading to him manipulating people to achieve his goals. In the play, it is clear that Hamlet causes much grief and turmoil in Denmark and eventually leads to Denmark's rot and his demise.
Get Access