Autonomy In Hamlet Research Paper

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Micaela Walker Dr. Reznicek English 120 12 December 2014 Comparing and Contrasting Feminine Autonomy Within Ancient Greek and Victorian culture, there are many standards that must be upheld especially through a family within political power. This essay will attempt to prove that although these women are married, when accused of scandalous infidelities, they have the ultimate autonomy to chose how they wish to be portrayed within their society. Throughout Shakespeare's Hamlet, Hamlet’s mother, Gertrude, is accused many times of being unfaithful within her marriage. “You are the queen, your husband’s brother’s wife; And- would it were not so! You are my mother” (Shakespeare 3.4.15-16). Although her husband, the former King of Denmark…show more content…
In a conversation between Hamlet, King Claudius, and Queen Gertrude, Hamlet exclaims his mother’s dependency on her former husband. Dependency on a male counterpart was very common, and frowned upon if you did not have that male influence within your life. “With which she followed my poor father’s body, Like None, all trans: why she, even she, O God! A beast that wants discourse of reason Would have mourned longer, - married with my uncle, My father’s brother, but no more like my father than I to Hercules” (Shakespeare 1.2.148-153). Within this piece of text, Hamlet is clearly distraught yet unaware to the actions of his mother, Gertrude. Hamlet is still grieving his fathers death due to the ghosts that he witnesses within the castle. In this passage between King Claudius and Hamlet, you can see how Claudius confides in Hamlet, and lets him know that he has surpassed his grieving period over his father. “’Tis sweet and commendable in your nature, Hamlet, to five these mourning duties to your father: But, you must know, your father lost a father, that father lost his, and the survivor bound in in filial obligation for some term to do obsequious sorry to preserve in obstinate condolement is a course of impious stubbornness; tis mainly grief” (Shakespeare 1.2.87-94). In a scene with Hamlet and the ghost of his father, Hamlet represents his feelings towards not only the…show more content…
"The Odyssey." The Norton Anthology of World Literature. By Martin Puchner. Vol. A. New York: W.W. Norton, 2012. N. pag. Print. Gilbert, Sandra M., and Susan Gubar. The Madwoman in the Attic: The Woman Writer and the Nineteenth-Century Literary Imagination. New Haven: Yale UP, 1979. Print. Shakespeare. "Hamlet." The Norton Anthology of World Literature. By Martin Puchner. Vol. C. New York: W.W. Norton, 2012. N. pag.

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