Femininity In Shakespeare's Hamlet
We noticed how Gertrude obeyed her husband in many situations. First, in Act2 the queen agrees with the king's doing which is asking Guildenstern and Rosencrantz, Hamlet's friends, to spy on Hamlet to Know if Hamlet is mad or not. Furthermore, she tells the two gentlemen by herself that:
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She preferred her husband on her son. Gertrude, in addition, did not talk with her son as a mother and her son. The only speech she talked with her son in her own closet, she allowed another person to listen to her speech with her son. As a result, we observe the role of Gertrude as a mother is passive. Perhaps Shakespeare violates the stereotype of the mother when representing Gertrude because she represents nothing of motherhood. She is cruel to her son because she harmed him as well as other characters in the play. However, she is a victim of male characters because Hamlet, the son, did not respect his mother and he insulted her as other characters in the play.
In "Introduction to Gertrude", Amanda Mabillard discusses that Gertrude cares only about herself and her pleasures. Thus, she is criticized by her society because she remarried quickly after her husband's death, and she remarried his husband's brother, which is against her religion and her society. Graf also explains in her essay "Gertrude's Role In Hamlet" that women in Elizabethan society should mourn their husband two years putting on the black attire, while Gertrude did not mourn her husband, and she remarried in less than two months which makes her guilty in front of patriarchal …show more content…
He introduces two female characters in the play (Gertrude and Ophelia) to show how men in patriarchal society oppress women. We observed that these women suffered from being free from men's authority. We also notice that these women have a passive role in the play.
By introducing Ophelia and Gertrude, Shakespeare sheds light on how women are treated badly. As GÜNENÇ (172) mentions that these women illustrate how men are cruel to women in patriarchal society, and how they used these women in order to achieve their own goals. GÜNENÇ also states, "Elizabethan society thinks that women are weak, so they should follow what the men tell them and obey the men’s rules". In other words, Elizabethan society decreases the role of woman, and it describes women as dependent to men in all situations.
Finally, at the end of the play the two women show their own opinion to get rid of men's authority and prove to their society that women are not dependent on men according to GÜNENÇ states. These women committed suicide, which is against the patriarchal society. GÜNENÇ concludes " Going mad and death are the only way for them to rescue themselves from