Hamlet – AO5

George Detmold – 1949 Hamlet’s ‘All but Blunted Purpose,’ ‘And yet he is a great tragic hero.’
George Detmold – 1949 Hamlet’s ‘All but Blunted Purpose,’ ‘Hamlet [dedicates himself to the pursuit of] moral beauty’
George Detmold – 1949 Hamlet’s ‘All but Blunted Purpose,’ ‘though he is a long time in killing Claudius, he does kill him at last, and he is capable of other actions which argue the rash and impulsive nature of a man with a strong will.’
Elaine Showalter ‘Ophelia is often portrayed, in productions, in “decorous style” and as “young, beautiful, harmless and pious”‘
Elaine Showalter ‘most persistently presented in terms of symbolic meaning’
Ernst Jones ‘Ophelia should be sensual as she seldom is on stage. She may be innocent and docile, but she is very aware of her body’
Millicent Bell – The Mask of Madness: Identity and Role-playing in Shakespeare’s Hamlet ‘Hamlet’s desire for suicide […] derives from the discrepancy between what is felt and what is done.’
Millicent Bell – The Mask of Madness: Identity and Role-playing in Shakespeare’s Hamlet ‘Hamlet’s appearance of madness is a representation of the fragility of that notion of identity in which he has ceased to believe.’
Millicent Bell – The Mask of Madness: Identity and Role-playing in Shakespeare’s Hamlet ‘in the revenge plays [pretending madness] diverts suspicion while in Hamlet it actually arouses it.’
Rebecca Smith (Feminist critic) ‘neither structure nor content [of Gertrude’s speeches] suggests the wantonness [attributed to her by the play’s masculine perspective].’
Carol Thomas Neely (Feminist critic) ‘until her madness, Ophelia scarcely exists outside of men’s use of her.’
Carol Thomas Neely (Feminist critic) ‘[her suicide] completes Ophelia’s separation from her roles as daughter, sweetheart, subject and from the literal and metaphorical poison which kills the others in the play.’

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