The Great Equalizer Of Society Essay

The Great Equalizer Of Society Essay

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The Great Equalizer of Society


Marxist theory shows the problems with a society heavily influenced with a class system. The system will eventually be replaced with a classless society due to the system negatively impacting the country in ways that are avoidable. This is evident in Hamlet as the royal family was so heavily involved in their own follies, rather than the problems of the rest of the country. The theme that Shakespeare implements in the play is that death is the great equalizer for all. There is no difference between the royal family of Hamlet, and the poorest of individuals after death. Hamlet supports marxist theory as the play shows that the traditional monarchy of Denmark is ineffective at proportionally allocating resources to people in equal amounts.

Marx believed that someone "...could dispose of his own person only after he had ceased to be bound to the soil, and ceased to be the slave or serf of another person” (Charnes). Marx believed that the poor were held down by their superiors and that they had no chance to move to a “higher” class. Marxist theory shows the crucial problems that drive the plot in Hamlet. This is most prominently evident with the scene with the grave digger.

The monarch creates a dramatically wide economic gap between the top percent and the lower and larger part of society. Most of the wealth is held by the royal families which creates an even larger gap between the classes. This allows for no movement between the classes and you are locked into the small range of your class. Not only does the monarchy provide no ability to move classes in Hamlet, it was a problem for “...socio-political stability” (Roberts). For example the gravedigger who speaks with Hamlet is a very intelligent ...


... middle of paper ...


...l differences between the two are unjustified. Shakespeare through this language and the theme of death is the great equalizer shows that a traditional monarch is a worse system than what a marxist society could be.

When the play is looked at as a whole, Hamlet shows the flaws with the monarchy as the royal family is at a much higher level in society even though they are no better, if not worse, than the rest of the country. The gravedigger talks to Hamlet and he understands what the gravedigger is telling him. Death is the great equalizer and the differences between the wealthiest, and poorest of people are truly no different. This supports the Marxist theory of which the society in Hamlet driven by class will be changed overtime to a classless society. The equalizer of death causes the changes in Hamlet’s understanding on the meaning of what society really is.

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