Hamlet Context

Mind Map by Thea-esme, updated more than 1 year ago
Created by Thea-esme over 6 years ago


Hamlet Context Mind Map on Hamlet Context, created by Thea-esme on 06/01/2013.

Resource summary

Hamlet Context
1 The ambiguity in the play is intentional because Shakespeare didn't want it to seem as though it was an attack on the court.
2 Hamlet was written in 1601 and probably first performed in The Globe in 1602!
2.1 It was written under the reign of King James I
3 Hamlet lives in a literal 'Panopticon' - 'Denmark is a prison' & 'Madness in great ones shall not unwatched go'.
3.1 This explains why Hamlet is such an internal character and an analytical thinker... he has always been watched by others.
4 He took the basic revenge story of a feeble-minded Prince of Denmark and changed it to resonate with problems occurring in the Renaissance era.
4.1 Humanists in the Renaissance era
4.1.1 Humanists wanted to develop a further understanding of the 'human experience'. It was thought that humans could only experience 'appearances' and had difficulty seeing the 'reality'. THIS IS THE WORLD HAMLET LIVES IN! Hamlet's revenge is based on something he cannot be sure about. He says he knows 'not seems', but still puts on a front/aparance of madness. Everyone in the court is hiding behind appearances and so the Danish court represents the world Shakespeare was living in.
4.1.2 The famous 'what a piece of work is a man' speech is based on humanist Pico Della Mirandola's, 'Oration on the dignity of man'.
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