Topic: Is Hamlet Really Insane? Hamlet written by Shakespeare is a play that can be seen with many points of views. Hamlet, the protagonist of the play plays a different part in the play. I think that Hamlet is a sane character. He is not insane. He faces problem in considering his situation in troubled state of affairs. His mother marries soon after his father’s death and his stepfather is his father’s step brother who gets all the right over the kingdom. Hamlet gets deprived of every special thing in his life such as his father, his kingdom, his beloved and his mother’s love. Considering all these state of affairs, Hamlet overly speculates over his situation due to which, he is considered mad. However, he is not mad at all.
Hamlet is quite a rational character but he is unable to fight with his circumstances that are all against him. Hamlet, after listening to his father’s ghost’s information about his murder and Claudius’s conspiracy against him tries to sort out the issue and avenge Claudius for his crime. He delays in taking action considering the moral issues involving the whole plan due to which, he overly speculates over the whole situation. It is due to his overly speculative nature that everyone in the court doubts about his mental state. For Hamlet, all the situations that have occurred to him have caused him to hate the world around him as he says,
“How weary, stale, flat and unprofitable, .
Seem to me all the uses of this world !” .(Hamlet, Act I, Scene II)
Hamlet thinks that his mother has committed an incestuous act by marrying Claudius soon after his father’s death. Not only has she deprived Hamlet with her motherly love but also snatched the right of being a king after his father’s death. She was unable to understand the melancholy of Hamlet at his father’s death and at her hurried marriage. He goes into a depressed state considering his inability to solve the problems of his life.
“The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune,
Or to take arms against a sea of troubles” (Hamlet, Act III, Scene 1)
Even Hamlet is unable to take revenge against Claudius in a timely manner due to which, he is considered as a mad character. He delays in taking action against Claudius, his father’s murderer and his this act dragged him into a more depressed and melancholic state. Hamlet is also a moral character because in killing Claudius, he thinks moralistically and is unable to kill him when he gets a chance when Claudius is praying.
Hamlet, himself claims that he is not mad at all, as he says,
“……….I essentially am not in madness,
But mad in craft…………….”(Hamlet, Act III, Scene IV)
Hamlet has seven soliloquies in the play that confirm to the fact that he is not mad at all. His words have profound meanings in them and his exploratory mind is quite evident from his soliloquies. The consideration of Hamlet as an insane character is quite wrong as he is quite perfect in his mental approach and it is only the problems and occurrences that drag him into a depressed and disheartened state due to which, he is regarded as an insane character.
Shakespeare, William. Hamlet. Sydney: Sydney University Press, 1998.