Reply To: Shakespeare, Anyone?

Forums Fiction General Writing Discussions Shakespeare, Anyone? Reply To: Shakespeare, Anyone?

Emily Waldorf



Thank you for the response, it was most interesting to read your thoughts. I’m glad I have found someone else who also thinks that Hamlet genuinely loves Ophelia.

I think that Hamlet is disillusioned with marriage and women in general, after being so hurt by his mother’s actions and, also, since his overtures toward Ophelia have been rejected. That was Polonius’ fault, but Hamlet doesn’t know that, maybe.

But despite all that, and coupled with it, when Hamlet interacts with people he must “put an antic disposition on” or feign madness–so I feel that a good part of his abrasive words to Ophelia in this scene are all part of the act. (I don’t  believe Hamlet was actually going mad, I believe it’s a disguise so he can get the information that he wants.)

I do think that he is angry with her for 1) disregarding his tenders of affection (“the pangs of dispriz’d love”) and 2) tattling on him to Polonius. You mentioned the interpretation where Hamlet knows that the king and Polonius are spying on him–I find that interpretation interesting, and think that even if he didn’t know they were there, he sure knew that everything he tells Ophelia gets back to Polonius, and everything Polonius knows goes right to the king.

But when I read the scene, I sense almost a reluctance to have to be harsh with her, though he might get carried away by his feelings of anger and confusion toward her.

Hamlet has been said to be a play about 3 wronged sons, which is true, but I end up feeling that Ophelia is as wronged as any of them, between her father, Hamlet (to an extent),  circumstances, and of course the king, because his actions have wronged everyone in the play.


I hope that made sense. I’m in a hurry, and communicating (especially on the subject of Hamlet) is not my strong point. (begs the question of why am I a writer, then.)

You like the Mel Gibson Hamlet. 🙂 I’ve never seen it, but from your previous post, it seems like a well-done version. (I haven’t had the time to watch this second one). I’m going to give the David Tennant Hamlet a try. I think it will be a wild interpretation, but it seems well acted, anyway.


Hier steche ich. Ich kann nicht anders. Gott helfe mir. Amen. ~Martin Luther

Pin It on Pinterest