William Shakespeare 's Hamlet - Ophelia 's Madness Essay

1572 Words Jul 15th, 2016 7 Pages
One of the oldest tricks in the book is to pretend to be insane and, that way, some people automatically let their guards down. In the play Hamlet by William Shakespeare, Hamlet and Ophelia goes crazy after the death of their fathers. However, one appears to be genuine, while the other is intended only to fool some people. Ophelia’s apparent insanity comes from the experience of her father’s death, while Hamlet’s is based solely on revenge. Ophelia deals with her madness alone while Hamlet uses others to deal with his madness. Ophelia’s madness reveals a more passive character while Hamlet’s madness reveals his aggressive character. Although both Ophelia and Hamlet appear insane, they differ in their reason for insanity, how they deal with it and what it reveals about their character. While both Ophelia and Hamlet are mad, the reasons for their lunacy are not the same. Ophelia’s madness is caused by the sudden death of her father. In act four scene five, the news of Ophelia’s madness reaches Gertrude. The gentleman, the bearer of this news, tells Gertrude about Ophelia’s insanity, She speaks much of her father, says she hears
There’s tricks i ' th ' world, and hems, and beats her heart,
Spurns enviously at straws, speaks things in doubt
That carry but half sense. Her speech is nothing,
Yet the unshaped use of it doth move
The hearers to collection (Shakespeare 4.5.4-10)
The bearer of this news explains to Gertrude that Ophelia’s speech makes no sense when she talks…

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