Context is a clear contemplation of the values of any epoch. particularly in Shakespeare’s canonical drama Hamlet. The events and characters in Hamlet embodies the historical context of switching faiths and political uncertainness that lead to a society imploding. Composed in the 1600s. the slaying of a male monarch and the invasion of foreign power would hold had peculiar resonance for the audience as there was an innate failed invasion of Britain by Spain and an attempted blackwash in the Court of Queen Elizabeth I. Additionally. the character Hamlet in this Elizabethan epoch represents the uncertainness of Christian values and the Renaissance demand for reconstructing the appointed hierarchy.
Hamlet was composed in a clip of great political uncertainness in English history in which the Queen Elizabeth I had withstood an blackwash effort. a defeated rebellion and a failed invasion by Spain. The events of Hamlet. in which a King is murdered and a state finally forfeited to foreign power. would hold had peculiar resonance for an Elizabethan audience. This upset can be seen through the garden imagination woven through the drama: “unweeded garden in two months dead” . The upset of the state is besides seen through the incongruousness of Gertrude and Claudius’s reunion: “Funeral bak’t repasts are in cold blood equipped Forth the matrimony tables”
The period in which Shakespeare wrote was one of explosive growing in cognition. The Renaissance has seen a resurgence of Classical acquisition ( reflected in mentions to Vigil in Hamlet ) . universe geographic expedition was challenged and revolutionizing peoples’ constructs of the existence with Ptolemaic heliocentric ( sun-centered ) theoretical account. Though Hamlet is an appropriation of a narrative told by Saxo Grammaticus. the ‘Revenge Tragedy’ paradigm of Thomas Kyd and the Senecan Tragedy. Shakespeare transcends other calamities by making a supporter that is more complex as Hamlet is a retaliation hero that is loath to revenge. Through his interior struggle originating from his tragic flaw- cunctation. Hamlet represents the duality of Christian values and the Renaissance demand for order in the Elizabethan epoch. This struggle is crystallised in the Prayer Scene ( III. three ) when Hamlet is go throughing through to his mother’s room when he comes upon the kneeling Claudius and recognises that he has an chance to kill him.
He decides non to since. he grounds. if he kills his uncle at supplication Claudius will travel to heaven and non to hell – that would be hapless retaliation. However. harmonizing to A. C. Bradley. this is Hamlet’s fatal defect – cunctation as Hamlet tries to convert himself that this is his responsibility: “Why. this is hire and wage. non revenge” . yet is moral codification prevents him from revenging. To this point. the audience is convinced that even if Hamlet was to kill Claudius at supplication. Claudius would non travel to heaven like what Hamlet had thought because of Claudius’s dry pair: “My words fly up. my idea remain below/ Wordss without idea ne’er to heaven go” .
Hamlet’s struggle is besides caused by his human-centered ego. denoted through his monologues and paralleling the age of enlightenment. In his monologue. he debates the medieval doctrines that demand for a boy to shrive his father’s ‘murder’ with conflicting Christianity. In a acrimonious tone. his desperation is denoted through self-laceration: “lecherous. kindles villain” . Yet this is once more an alibi for stalling as his defeat at ‘thought’ prevails over any sort of ‘resolution’ .
In decision. it is obvious that the values of any epoch are reflected through its context. The events and characters in Hamlet mirrors the innate instability and spiritual turbulence of the 1600s.