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Hamlet may already be going mad when the play begins, and his later decision to fake madness is just a cover for real insanity.
s sanity, as these details compromise his madness, and that if Horatio notices any strange behavior from Hamlet, it is because he is putting on an act. He knows that he is not the same as he used to be and fears he is going insane, so by telling his closes friend that he is just an act, he covers his tracks. It is no, nor it cannot come to good…but break my heart, for must hold my tongue.? In his mind were thoughts and plans in which he always knew each persons next step before they did it. Even if the madness was true or false, as Hamlet portrayed the role of a madman he took it upon himself to be lost in his control of actions. 116 Bevington, David The Complete Works of Shakespeare Glenview, Illinois: Foresman, 1968 pg.
All he can do in this frustrated state is to lash out with bitter satire at the evils he sees and then relapse into suicidal melancholy. Due to his procrastination and thoughts of revenge he became so overwhelmed with every situation and plot that he entangled himself in his own schemes and had to sacrifice his sanity. 1069 Corum Richard Understanding Hamlet Westpoint, CT: Greenwood, 1998 pg.
The most obvious evidence is that Hamlet himself says he is going to pretend to be mad, suggesting he is at least sane enough to be able to tell the difference between disordered and rational behavior.
Hamlet tells Horatio and Marcellus that he plans to “put an antic disposition on” (I.v).
After Hamlet has discovered the truth about his father, he goes through a very traumatic period, which is interpreted as madness by readers and characters. Professor Stoll from the University of Minnesota, believes that Hamlet was insane. This is the first critic that I have read that thinks that Hamlet was not insane. s death, and in order to get his thoughts together about his revenge on the killer he had to put on an act and not be himself. s tragedies someone has either went insane or was already insane. s tragedies contains insanity either one of his characters are insane or is becoming insane.
Beneath a strange choice of imagery involving points of the compass, the weather, and hunting birds, he is announcing that he is calculatedly choosing the times when you appear mad. His public face is one of insanity but, in his private moments of soliloquy, through his confidences to Horatio, and in his careful plans of action, we see that his madness is assumed. He spoke to himself when he was alone, he had strange mood swings, he hated his mother, and always talked about death? Professor Stoll does have a point, but Hamlets real reasons for these acting were to get revenge for his father?Hamlet describes Gertrude’s marriage as “incestuous” (), but no one else in the play agrees with his opinion.Even though the Ghost instructs Hamlet not to “contrive against thy mother aught” (I.v), Hamlet’s disgust with his mother’s sex life mounts as the play continues: when he finally confronts Gertrude he paints a picture of her “honeying and making love over the nasty sty” (III.iii).The fact that Hamlet’s biggest emotional outbursts are directed against the sexual feelings of the women in his life suggests that his mad behavior is not just a ploy to disguise his revenge plans.Despite the evidence that Hamlet is actually mad, we also see substantial evidence that he is just pretending.Hamlet demonstrates a similar attitude to Ophelia’s sexuality, telling her “Get thee to a nunnery” rather than become “a breeder of sinners” (III.i).After giving Ophelia a long list of what he sees as women’s faults, Hamlet confesses: “It hath made me mad” (III.i).For every piece of evidence that Hamlet is mad, we can also point to evidence that he’s sane, which contributes to the mystery of Hamlet’s character.By making the audience constantly question whether Hamlet is really mad or just pretending, Hamlet asks us whether the line between reality and acting is as clear-cut as it seems.” (): Claudius thinks it’s strange and unhealthy that Hamlet is still grieving for his father.In the same scene Hamlet tells us that he is wearing “solemn black” and a “dejected ‘havior” (), which audiences in Shakespeare’s time would have recognised as signs of “melancholy,” a condition which Renaissance doctors believed could lead to madness.