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Moral Obligation…in Hamlet & a Fetus

By Lulu Eastman, V Form

Moral Obligation…in Hamlet & a Fetus

Hamlet, a Shakespeare play, follows the tragic tale concerning a deeply troubled Danish prince of the same name. Hamlet is forced to confront his traitorous mother and uncle in order to avenge his murdered father, who, as a ghost, has requested Hamlet takes his uncle’s life in order to bring him justice. However, Hamlet is distressed by the thought of committing such a bloody deed. As he wavers through indecision regarding his proposed mission, he also struggles against the drowning weight of his depression, as the toxic environment of the palace causes him to lose faith in the goodness of people. In the novel, Nutshell, by Ian McEwan, the story of the fetus is based off of Hamlet. With the reflective fetus entangled in the plotting of his traitorous mother and uncle, he finds himself in a predicament similar to that of the Danish prince. Although he has yet to even experience life for his own, the fetus has already lost hope for the vitality and decency of humanity. Every moment of his being is spent listening to conversations that only reveal more and more of the villainous and duplicitous ways of his mother and uncle, Trudy and Claude. Both Hamlet and the fetus reach a point where they contemplate committing suicide, as it seems to be the only way to put an end to their pain. However, both decide to live instead. Though both Hamlet and the fetus have cynical views of the world, and both consider suicide, they continue living through their suffering because they have moral obligations, beliefs, and fears that bind them to life. (more…)

Reviving Ophelia’s Song

By Sam Sarafin, V Form

Reviving Ophelia’s Song

What happens to a life so battered and bruised under the gift wrap of perfection? What happens to a life

Beilfuss-Ophelia-24x36 whose opportunities have been seized by another, whose ideals and self-importance are plucked out of fingertips before they even left a print? In the play Hamlet by William Shakespeare, Ophelia is often depicted as well-composed and sophisticated. When Ophelia sings a song before her death, she can attribute the meaning of the lyrics to one feeling or event – most often, this meaning is madness or grief. While Ophelia sang this song to convey her distress, there are many hidden meanings in the lyrics. Ophelia’s song is not an expression of one event or one feeling – it is the verbalization of grief over Polonius and Hamlet and a scrutiny of Gertrude’s portrayal of love. In it, Ophelia laments about patriarchal society and the way she had been controlled and used. (more…)