How Does Hamlet's Tragic Flaw Ultimately Lead To t

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How Far Does Hamlet’s tragic flaw ultimately lead to the demise of Ophelia or is it not entirely his miss-doing? In Aristotle’s definition of a tragic hero, “one must be of an aristocratic stature whose destruction is for a greater cause of principle.” Hamlet fits this definition of a tragic hero; his tragic flaw, or harmatia as Aristotle defines it, is his inability to make a decision. We see Hamlet debate his options numerous times throughout the play, most notably in his “to be or not to be” soliloquy where he contemplates the notion of suicide. Hamlet also has moral tunnel vision; all his actions are based on revenge which causes the death of Ophelia and many other characters in the kingdom. Ophelia’s life is most notably affected by Hamlet due to the relationship they share, the relationship changes under the circumstances due to the death of Hamlet’s father. Before this their relationship does seem to be built on love and frankness, but after learning his mother’s hand in his father’s murder he perceives all women with the same hatred. The decisions Hamlet makes causes Ophelia to become a tragic victim, Hamlet’s demise is bought about by his own hamartia, but as a tragic victim Ophelia’s demise is bought about by other’s short comings mainly Hamlet’s. Her death can be argued to be Hamlet’s doing, but Ophelia committed suicide, she must then be held accountable for her own actions and blame should be passed away from Hamlet. The man in Ophelia’s life seem to control her, this is her human failing and not having a ‘back bone’ eventually leads to her death. Her father, Polonius, puts her into a situation of crisis with Hamlet in Act 3 Scene I; at this point in the play Polonius uses her as his puppet so that he can spy on Hamlets actions while he is alone with Ophelia. Polonius has no interest in Ophelia’s wants or needs. He feels by exploiting his daughter

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