Flaw of Hamlet Essay

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In considering the fatal flaw of Hamlet, namely his obsession to avenge the murder of his father, it could be argued that he is truly an immoral character. There are, however, omnipresent psychological implications that must be taken into consideration when examining the actions which unfold within this tragic play. Though the catalyst to Hamlet's actions is the death of his father and the manner in which the other characters react to it, the motivation for his actions is rooted in his relationships and pressures on the mind. For a dedicated son, Hamlet is remarkably reluctant to avenge his father. He does not know whether to kill Claudius or not as he does not know what father to obey. The revenge plot, and thus Hamlet's fatal flaw, is established with the ghost's utterance "So art thou to revenge, when thou shalt hear" (I v 20). When the ghost reveals the true architect of his demise, Hamlet's suspicions grow that Gertrude and Claudius may have been having an affair. He reasons out that if the affair is one of long standing then Claudius may be his biological father. Hamlet cannot bear to act against one who may be his true father. If this is true of Claudius, does Hamlet owe his allegiance to him, or the man who raised him? Hamlet also hates murder and is, at first, extremely shocked at the requests of the ghost. “ Hamlet is basically on the side of angels, educated to think deeply and is genuinely appalled at what the ghost demands of him.”1 Yet if he does not concede to these demands he will feel like he is betraying the memory of the man he has believed to be his father for many years. Despite such intense psychological pressures, Hamlet remains a moral character and is susceptible to inaction. It is in his relationship with Gertrude and his sexuality that the root of Hamlet's psychological pressures can be discovered. Furthering the demands on his

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