Heroism in Hamlet

Heroism in Hamlet

Order Description

Hamlet has often been defined as an “anti-hero” because his words and actions harm those around him. He denounces Ophelia while he claims both to have loved her and never loved her at all (Act III, scene i and again in Act III, scene ii). He uses similar language in his angry confrontation with Queen Gertrude, causing her to call out to Polonius in fear for her life.
These painful confrontations seem separate from Hamlet’s indecision over whether to believe the ghost’s account of King Hamlet’s death at the hands of King Claudius. Hamlet’s conversation with his mother occurs after he seemingly has evidence of King Claudius’ guilt through his reaction to the play. Hamlet apparently has all the evidence that he needs to act at this point, yet he does not.
Choose one below

The question of whether Hamlet is a hero or anti-hero is up to you in this Essay.

Heroism in Hamlet
Hamlet has often been defined as an “anti-hero” because his words and actions harm those around him. He denounces Ophelia while he claims both to have loved her and never loved her at all (Act III, scene i and again in Act III, scene ii). He uses similar language in his angry confrontation with Queen Gertrude, causing her to call out to Polonius in fear for her life.
These painful confrontations seem separate from Hamlet’s indecision over whether to believe the ghost’s account of King Hamlet’s death at the hands of King Claudius. Hamlet’s conversation with his mother occurs after he seemingly has evidence of King Claudius’ guilt through his reaction to the play. Hamlet apparently has all the evidence that he needs to act at this point, yet he does not.
Choose one below

The question of whether Hamlet is a hero or anti-hero is up to you in this Essay.
________________________________________
Watch the short ten-minute video, Hamlet’s Journey, [Video File] [06 min 47 sec] produced by the Folger Shakespeare Library. It opens with the scene where Hamlet encounters the ghost of old King Hamlet and continues with a discussion of the play, particularly, Hamlet himself.
As you are viewing the production, please pay particular attention to the section where Michele Osherow briefly summarizes the debate over whether Hamlet can be characterized as a heroic figure. Interestingly, she defines Hamlet as a hero because of his reluctance to kill.
In your initial discussion post of using 500+ words, identify at least five adjectives or phrases that you would use to describe a hero or heroic action. Based upon your own definition and examples (including quotations) from Act III, is Hamlet a hero in your eyes?

There are a number of ways to access Hamlet.
Chances are that you can pick up a cheap paper copy of the play almost anywhere. If you do so or have one that you might have read previously, please make sure that the paper edition is the Folger Library Shakespeare version.

If you want to read Hamlet online, I would recommend the version at Shakespeare’s Words Web site because it gives both line numbers and definitions of words not commonly used in modern English.
You can also access Hamlet for free online at any one of the sites listed below:
3.    The Tragedy of Hamlet, Prince of Denmark (mit.edu)
4.    The Tragedy of Hamlet, Prince of Denmark (opensourceshakespeare.org)
Regardless of the version you choose, I strongly recommend that you use a version with line numbers. These will be very helpful when citing your quotations in your papers. Although your papers for these next three weeks do not require citing outside sources, you will be asked to cite the quotations that you use from Hamlet. The following web sites will assist you in doing so:
•    How to Cite Drama – (APA Style)
•    Son of the Citation Machine (APA Style)