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October 23, 2005

Why be so Obvious?

Shakespheare, Hamlet (Act 3-5) Drama as Literature (EL 250)

When Hamlet's plan to reveal the guilt of Claudius being the murderer of the king, every thing fell into place. Claudius watched the play as it re-enacted what he had done with King Hamlet. His only reaction was this quote:

CLAUDIUS: Give me some light: away!

That's the power of drama for you! Maybe this outburst by Claudius was in fact him being sorry for want he done. But it's extremely clear that it doesn't last long because he tries so hard to get rid of Hamlet. Maybe if Claudius would have repented and stepped down from the throne he would have been all right (Hamlet wouldn't have killed him when he repented becuase he would have gone to Heaven). Do you think that Claudius regret killing the king or just regret get caught by Hamlet.

Posted by KevinHinton at October 23, 2005 1:10 PM


I think Claudius acts foolishly and makes it very obvious he killed Old Hamlet. I'm not sure if I agree Claudious knows it was Hamlet who told the players to reenact Old Hamlet's death, though. I just always thought he wacthes this play, it is very similar to the crime he committed, he gets freaked out, and then leaves.

Posted by: AmandaNichols at October 23, 2005 2:19 PM

Good point, Kevin! For a murderous, scheming plotter, Claudius certainly doesn't have a pokerface! But then, that's part of the message of Shakespeare -- our evil actions have an affect on our personalities, and soon our actions take control of us.

Posted by: Dennis G. Jerz at October 23, 2005 3:43 PM

Kevin, I agree as well, but I'm not sure that if Claudius repented Hamlet still wouldn't have killed him. As we saw already, Hamlet was really affected by the ghost and everything that he has done so far is because of what the ghost had said to him. I think that since the ghost told Hamlet to get revenge, he probably would have still killed Claudius anyway. Maybe not but that's just my opinion.

Posted by: Andy LoNigro at October 23, 2005 7:25 PM

Honestly, I don't think that he regrets killing the king at all. As a matter of fact, when he's in the chapel praying, he wishes that he COULD be sorry. That's an interesting comment that Dr. Jerz made about the mesage of Shakespeare. I never thought about the message.

Posted by: Chera Pupi at October 23, 2005 9:42 PM

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