Flaws In Shakespeare's Shortcomings

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Flaws can emerge in the most honourable individuals when following a perilous path. Often times, members of society become ignorant to their own imperfections, thus turning into their own enemy. In the play, Hamlet, by William Shakespeare, the flaws of characters lead to their demise. Three characters that become victims of their own shortcomings include, Hamlet, Ophelia, and Laertes. Firstly, Hamlet is a tragic hero, who is caught in the turmoil of his personal vendetta against his uncle Claudius. He brings death upon himself due to his procrastination, remorselessness and misogyny. Secondly, Ophelia’s an innocent character who is controlled by her father, Polonius, making her fragile and naïve, resulting in her grievous end. Lastly, Laertes …show more content…
He acts with blind fury, gullibility, and dishonorably, resulting in his fatal collapse. The tragic flaws displayed by these three characters in Hamlet cause their subsequent downfall. Hamlet’s goal throughout the play is to seek revenge, but his flaws create an atmosphere of doubt. He procrastinates to enact vengeance on his uncle, Claudius, with him saying, “How all occasions do inform against me, And spur my dull revenge!” (4.4. 31-32). Hamlet’s procrastination is evident because he desires vengeance on his uncle near the beginning of the play, yet does not act on it until close to the end of the play. Hamlet seeks justice with all his heart, but is unable to execute his revenge leading to his own death and the death of his loved ones. Similarly, he also does not feel remorse for those effected during his grand plan of releasing his father from purgatory. Right after Polonius’s death, Hamlet calls him, “wretched, rash, intruding fool, farewell. I took thee for thy better. Take thy fortune” (3.4.32-34). This quotation demonstrates Hamlet’s lack of regret as he is using derogatory words to …show more content…
With the loss of his whole family, Laertes’s judgement is clouded by his blind fury. He refuses to reason or seek mens rea by saying, “That drop of blood that’s calm proclaims me bastard, Cries “Cuckold!” to my father” (4.5.92-93). With the loss of his father Laertes is unable to control his rage. He confronts the King, ready to lay down his life for his pride and loyalty. His sense of love for his father, creates disarray in his mind after his death. Furthermore, given Laertes’s altered state of mind, Claudius disguises as a friend to influence him to kill Hamlet in cold blood. Claudius persuades him by saying, “If it be so, Laertes—As how should it be so? How otherwise? —Will you be ruled by me?” (4.7.56-58). With this quote showing Laertes to be in a dark time in his life, with his loved ones dead, Claudius steps in to take advantage of his desperation. His anger is the root of his gullibility, with him feeling that his duty as a son is in jeopardy. He is unable to recognize the deceitfulness of Claudius’s true plan and agrees whole heartedly to commit the sin. In addition, all these events cause him to act in a dishonorable manner. He agrees to a friendly fencing match planned by Claudius to appease his rage regarding his father’s death. Although Laertes is the better swordsmen, he decides to poison his rapier by saying, “I will do ’t. And for that purpose I’ll anoint my sword”

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