Hamlet's Struggle with Time out of Joint Essay

2069 Words 9 Pages
Hamlet's Struggle with "time out of joint"

The time is out of joint./O curséd spite, that I was ever born to set it right. This essay will examine Hamlet’s dramatic struggle to “set time right”. The issue will be divieded in two parts, one the upset to Denmark and Elsinore, the other the struggle to repair it; each shall be dealt with in turn. From the opening few lines of Hamlet we know that things are not 'right' in Denmark. The opening Act of the play is an unfolding litany of portents and signs until in Scene 5 the Ghost tells Hamlet of the murder by Claudius. We have already heard, in his first soliloquy, of Hamlet's struggles; in this case his depression and suicidal thoughts. This is typical of Hamlet's struggle in
…show more content…
In Act 1, Scene 2 (I.ii) Hamlet is already at odds with Claudius and Gertrude. First he is upset by their asking that he give up his mourning for his dead father--"cast thy nighted colour off". Then Claudius' request that he stay in Denmark rather than return to Wittenberg is ignored, his mother's request is answered with "I shall in all my best obey you, mother". In fact he probably intends to disobey them both.

At the conclusion of this scene Hamlet's soliloquy is the first sign we get of his feeling that all is not right. He already harbours suicidal thoughts :-

Oh that this too too solid flesh would melt,
Thaw, and resolve itself into a dew,
Or that the Everlasting had not fixed
His canon 'gainst self-slaughter!

We also see that Hamlet already thinks that his mother's marriage to Claudius is wrong:-

...O most wicked speed to post
With such dexterity to incestuous sheets!
It is not, nor it cannot come to good.

In I.iv we have Hamlet being told by the Ghost that Claudius murdered old Hamlet, condemning him to walk at night until the murder is avenged. We also hear of Claudius drinking

Related Documents