Differences and Similarities in Hamlet

Differences and Similarities in Hamlet

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Differences and Similarities in Hamlet

(1) Shakespeare’s play Hamlet [Titles] uses character flaws and strong emotions to highlight strengths and weaknesses in his characters. He also uses differences and similarities between characters to force action along the path he intends the story to travel. This technique is called using foils. The likes or dislikes of one character for another can completely alter the direction of the story. For example, love of a son for his father can be twisted and perverted, with the proper use of characters, into an outlet for hatred and revenge. [This is a very nice idea for a thesis, but instead of using Gertrude and Ophelia as foils (See below.), it would have been much better to use Fortinbras, who, like Hamlet, is also a son of a king who has been killed. Gertrude and Ophelia simply do not fit the category of "son."]

(2) An example of foils is Hamlet and Laertes. [Which is the foil?] They both love their fathers, but their love has been distorted and all they feel now is a need for revenge for their fathers’ deaths. The need they have for revenge is fueled by their love for the father’s [No '] they lost. However, they pay for this with their lives. They both are honorable men, they both see the errors they made and forgive each other at the end of the play. Hamlet and Laertes are similar in some ways and different in other ways.

(3) Laertes blames Hamlet for the death of his father. [Poor topic sentence] This becomes even worse when Claudius doesn’t openly punish Hamlet because of his popularity. Hamlet knows that Laertes is a good soldier and is loyal to Claudius. These men differ in the way they seek revenge. Laertes, upon arrival and hearing of his father’s death immediately goes to Claudius and seeks justice for his father. On the other hand, Hamlet doesn’t show any need for speed at all. He begins to devise an intricate plan of faked mental instability and other ploys to get his way. However, Laertes would not hesitate to take his revenge quickly. [This is, perhaps, Laertes' most important role as a foil for Hamlet. It should be emphasized more, by showing how Laertes' haste brings Hamlet's procrastination into the sunlight.

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(4) Hamlet and Ophelia had similarities. They were drawn to each other as lovers. Both of them also loved and obeyed the wishes of their fathers. Madness and deception enter into their relationship. Hamlet acts mad as part of his plot of revenge on Claudius. Hamlet drives Ophelia mad by rejecting her and killing her father, Polonius.

(5) They differ when Ophelia tries to understand Hamlet’s intentions toward her as a lover. He denies any feelings toward her at all. She knows this to be untrue she feels helpless in the face of Hamlet’s rejection. [RO] Hamlet uses Ophelia as a "whipping post" representing the corruption of womankind, when he says to Ophelia to ["?]go to a nunnery" to her. Hamlet was expressing his disgust with women in general as he lashed out at her. After Ophelia’s death[,] Hamlet regrets using her this way. [Paragraphs four and five should be combined with a revised topic sentence. They are both too short. Also, how do these two paragraphs relate to the thesis -- the idea that a son's love can be twisted and perverted into an outlet for hatred and revenge?]

(6) Hamlet and his mother Gertrude both loved King Hamlet. They loved each other as mother and son. They are surprised at one another because of how they reacted to the death of Hamlet’s father. The death of King Hamlet strains their relationship, but they still love one another.

(7) Their differences begin with Hamlet believing Gertrude is weak for having marrying [married] his uncle so soon after his father’s death. Gertrude loves Claudius deeply [Evidence?] and Hamlet hates him. Gertrude wants Hamlet to stop mourning his father and get on with his life. Hamlet despises his mother and loves her at the same time. This contradiction is a hard load for Hamlet to balance. [Nice point.] [Paragraphs six and seven should be combined with a revised topic sentence. They are both too short. Again, how do these two paragraphs relate to the thesis?]

(8) The emotions in this the tragic play, [No ,] are set off by the foils. Hamlet and Laertes are sons obsessed by the need for revenge. Hamlet and Gertrude are torn apart by a love- hate relationship. Hamlet and Ophelia are young lovers that never had a chance at love because of events out of their control. Shakespeare uses this play as a morality lesson. He is saying that evil intentions [Do you ever explain who has the evil intentions?] can twist love and honor. Strong emotions must be tempered with logical thoughts. This play reinforces these beliefs and makes for one of the great plays of all time. The price of revenge was too high for Hamlet to pay.
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