William Shakespeare 's Hamlet The Quantity Of Female Characters

1131 Words Mar 24th, 2016 null Page
In Shakespeare’s Hamlet the quantity of female characters is limited to two people, however while their numbers are low, they still maintain an important role in the play through their interactions with Hamlet. Hamlet’s perception of his mother evolves throughout the play from one with no evidence to support discontent, to one of a flawed sinner in need of instruction because of her betrayal of Hamlet’s father. Hamlet’s view that Gertrude has lost her virtue causes him to generalize his negative view to all women and this affects Hamlet’s relationship with the only other female character in the play, Ophelia, by causing Hamlet to see every woman as a sinner with no virtue who needs instruction, the same way that he sees his mother. Hamlet’s harsh treatment of the women leads them both to share the same dreadful fate.
There is no evidence found in the play that prior to the King’s death, Hamlet and Gertrude shared any relationship other than a what is normal for a mother and son to share. Early on in the play however, the reader is able to witness the relationship as it stands currently, by observing Hamlet and Gertrude’s interaction with each other. Queen: “Good Hamlet, cast thy nighted, color off… do not forever with they vailed lids seek for thy noble father in the dust.” (Act 1 sc. 2 Ln. 70-74) It is evident that Gertrude does not believe that anything has changed and she is being the attentive mother that she has always been, despite the fact that her husband has…

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