The Tragic Flaw of Hamlet

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The Tragic Flaw of Hamlet

One of the greatest works in literature, Shakespeare's Hamlet has been the topic of controversial discussion ever since it was written. The controversies range from "Is

Hamlet truly mad, to Is Hamlet really in love with Ophelia." The most intriguing topic of discussion though, is Hamlet's fatal flaw. As in all Shakespearean works, there is always

a tragic hero. This hero is always the person that the audience comes to love, however every tragic hero has to have some kind of a tragic flaw that eventually leads to his downfall. Many critics have different ideas of what Hamlet's flaw is, some believe it is his procrastination, others' his deep moral sensibility, or his high idealism, and so on.

These flaws however, do not cause a downfall and a death of a hero. The flaw must be something that goes on inside the character's head, and something that torments him until his final breath. The flaw of Hamlet is that his nature is so excessively concerned about death that he no longer knows right from left. All the deaths of personal relationships and of his father make him think about it, day and night. All Hamlet does, is ponder death and suicide in almost every one of his soliloquies. Everything Hamlet does in this play is centered on something or someone dying that is why his overwhelming interest and curiosity of death will eventually lead him to his own grave.

Hamlet's first intense thought of death probably occurred after his own father's death. When his father died, Hamlet did not know it was murder therefore; Hamlet probably began questioning god and his ways of working. Then, when his mother marries his uncle, Hamlet is so appalled and angry that he considers death aloud in his very first so...

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...robably hides behind the fact that Polonious was spying on him, and therefore deserves what he got.

Hamlet's tragic flaw of being excessively concerned with death ultimately serves as his downfall because Laertes will stop at nothing to avenge his father's death. The killing of Polonious as previously mentioned was due to the fact that death was always on Hamlet's mind. If Hamlet had been content with the environment he was in, he would not have taken such rash action and plunged his knife into the curtain. The idea of death that has clouded Hamlet's mind since the beginning of the play finally shows consequences. These consequences lead to Hamlet's death in the final scene of the play. The appearance of Hamlet is that of a perfect prince who has everything, but the staggering reality is that even he has a tragic flaw, which eventually leads him to his own death.
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