Shakespeare's Treatment Of Women In Hamlet

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In Hamlet, Shakespeare only includes two women in the play, they are both close to the main character, Hamlet, who sees both in two completely different ways and therefore treats them differently too, one with cynical love and the other with a regretful hatred. In Hamlet, Hamlet pretends to be crazy because he is plotting against his murderer of an uncle, Claudius, who killed his natural father and married his mother. From the statement of old King Hamlet, about his brother Claudius poisoning him, Hamlet smolders inside thinking that maybe his mother was a part of a conspiracy with her new found husband and had something to do with the murder of the old king. Hamlet is obnoxious towards his mother with back talk and sarcastic remarks, and later …show more content…
Hamlet’s treatment of his mother isn’t so much of an act as his treatment towards Ophelia, his lover. While Hamlet is acting crazy to trick everyone thinking he has gone mad, he his out of his mind rude to Ophelia in some parts of the play, but then there are moments like when he tells her to go to a nunnery, that the readers and audience can tell that Hamlet is not actually crazy, nor does he hate her, but he actually cares enough to tell her something like this. It made lead to a plan to come back to Ophelia in his mind, or he knows that that will be the only safe place for her, but it’s the thought, and not just the words that come out of his mouth, but the deeper meaning to it. Shakespeare treats the female characters of this play with a sort of resentment, Hamlet ends up furious with his mother for marrying his father’s murderer and he tells Ophelia he never loved her, which drove her mad in the end after Polonius’s death and she ended up killing herself. I think fair cruelty is a way to describe Shakespeare’s treatment of women in his play Hamlet.
The women in Macbeth, the three witches, Lady
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Desdemona is killed by her husband because he is crazy jealous and doesn’t believe her side of the story. She is so kind hearted that she doesn’t really even ask him why he is upset with her, she just accepts her fate and lets Othello kill her. Emilia is taken for granted by Iago, her husband, because of the evidence that comes with the handkerchief of Desdemona’s that Iago plants and frames her with trying to upset Othello. Iago also uses Bianca, a prostitute, to copy the handkerchief so that his plan will work out. In this play, Shakespeare makes women out to be weak and vulnerable, gullible enough to use them in a plotted murder without them knowing. Especially with Bianca being a prostitute, that just isn’t right because, yes there are prostitutes in this world, but creates a stereotype in the play, implying that each woman is a slut, especially considering Iago thinks Emilia has been unfaithful to him, and Othello thinks the same thing about Desdemona. Shakespeare’s portrayal of the female characters in Othello is demeaning and almost harsh because even though in the end they are all the victims of deceit, they look like unfaithful and stupid women through the

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