Hamlet’s behavior raises a concern to Claudius and Gertrude who initiate a discussion about his melancholic behavior. Rosencrantz and Guildenstern about enter the discussion stating they cannot understand what Hamlet has been speaking of and acting lately. Hamlets obsession and enthusiasm about Ophelia draws the attention of the king and queen. Claudius and Polonius decide to follow and spy on him to try and understand his latest actions and utterances. They are keen to capture the details of Hamlet’s confrontation with Ophelia. When Polonius hears Hamlet’s steps approaching, he and the king proceed to a hideout to spy on him.
While in the hideout, Hamlet enters the fray and begins to speak thoughtfully and painfully to himself. mainly, the self-discussion revolves around committing suicide for all the frustration he has faced. He poses the question; “To be or not to be”. In his conviction, Hamlet is convinced that no one in the universe would tolerate his endeavors and tribulation. He feels that those who wish to rebel are just afraid of something, ultimately death (Act 3, Scene 1, Lines 83-85). In his position, he asserts that due to the fear of the unknown, human beings would rather tolerate the vices occurring across life. Hamlet feels that human would prefer death rather than confronting the tribulations of life. Opheila suddenly appears in mid thought and begins expresses her desire to repay all good and benefits for the love between them. Hamlet, respond angrily in denial of ever sacrificing and offering love while lamenting the dishonesty of beauty. Hamlet also laments that he only loved Ophelia for a moment but never felt a thing for her after that ((3.1-89-90)).
When Polonius and the King emerge from hiding, they are concerned about Hamlet’s word and position. In their conviction, Hamlet’s strange behavior more than insanity. They describe Hamlet as a depressed person and advocate for sending him to Getrudes chamber. The intention is to spy on him and establish whether his obsession for Ophelia could be a cause for his insane behavior.
Shakespear is successful in bringing out a three-dimensional character involving Hamlet, the audience and the observers. Hamlets words tend to mean more than what meets the eye. Hamlet presents himself as a different person beyond what people identify him to be. His thoughts about taking away his own life and the entire soliloquy present an individual with dominant suicidal thoughts. Interestingly, at no point does Hamlet explain the reasons for wanting to take away his life. He assumes an abstract position that reflects the position of an ordinary citizen unable to bear prevailing circumstances around life. It occurs as if he is talking to himself to bring out the thoughts of a person in despair (Ghose, Indira, 2010).
From his position, anyone would think that his obsession and madness is a result of love for Ophelia. Claudius and Polonius spy on him to identify the possible effects of lovesickness to his insane behavior. Hamlet presents a position of questionable love for Ophelia claiming that he only loved her for a while but had since stopped loving her. However, one would doubt his position on self-destruction with his initial thoughts on weird behavior. However, a close analysis of Hamlet’s situation reveals his frustration and bitterness against Ophelia and women in general with women general perception of the world.
Throughout his soliloquy, Hamlets expresses the feeling of worthlessness with the basic premise that we are all born, live, and will all die. He explores his potential capacity “To be or not to be”. This statement reflects on many aspects of life. One approach may try to unravel whether humans are responsible for their fate in life. Further, Hamlet explore the opportunities for individuals in the case of frustration and unending suffering. The greatest question is whether the human race can end their troubles by picking on death, natural or self-inflicted (3.1.56-60).
Ghose, Indira (2010). “Jesting with Death: Hamlet in the Graveyard”. Textual Practice. Routledge Publishing. 24 (6): 1003–18
Untermacher, John. Miller, W.C. ed. “Halmet Act 3 Summary and Analysis”. Gradesaver, 2009 Web. Accessed 21 April 2018