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Hamlet tragic flaw

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on 2 April 2014

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Transcript of Hamlet tragic flaw

Hamlet continues to deny the fact that his mother broke her marriage vows to King Hamlet. He thinks he should kill her, but he can't.
3. Procrastinating on killing Claudius by putting on “The Mousetrap”
4. Hamlet delays killing Claudius when he is praying.
The ghost of Hamlet’s father tells him to avenge his foul murder

Hamlet states that “Haste me to know't, that I, with wings as swift as meditation or the thoughts of love, may sweep to my revenge” (1.5.29-31)
In Act 3 scene 4, Hamlet enters Gertrude's chambers and tells her to be virtuous, even though she's not. He also tells her to repent, but all just so he can delay the fact that he has to kill her for breaking her marriage vows to King Hamlet.
Hamlet’s inability to act makes him hesitant towards killing Claudius. He says, “The time is out of joint, O curséd spite, that I was ever born to set it right” (1.5.188-189)
Hamlet is paralyzed
He's paralyzed with grief over his father's death. He spends most of his time grieving and not moving on or acting on any of his thoughts or plans, such as suicide.
Hamlet says, "Or that the Everlasting had not fixed his canon' gainst self-slaughter. O God, God! How weary, stale, flat, and unprofitable
seems to me all the uses of the world" (1.2, 131-134).
Hamlet is afraid of the unknown
In the "To be or not to be" speech (3.1.56-88) Hamlet is debating suicide but he decides not to because he doesn't know what lies on the other side.

Fear is stopping him from taking action.

Suicide vs. revenge
If he doesn't commit suicide, then he has to get revenge for his father's death, which he also doesn't want to do.
In conclusion, Hamlet's tragic flaw is his incapability to act. He is unable to go through with suicide, killing his mother, or killing Claudius.

1. Hamlet is unable to act on committing suicide.
Suicide is forbidden; it's a sin in Christianity
This quote is saying that Hamlet's life has lost all meaning, yet he can't commit suicide because it's forbidden.
His ability to act is affected because he can't decide which would be better; so, he does neither.
He is unable to move on, which causes him to be unable to act.
William Shakespeare's Hamlet is
a play of a man who is incapable of action. Hamlet's tragic flaw is his inability to act. By examining his incapability to commit suicide, his inability to come to terms with killing his mother, putting on a play to delay killing Claudius and the inability to kill Claudius while he's praying, we see that Hamlet chooses not to take action.

He criticizes himself harshly, thinking and hoping that he can kill Claudius quickly instead of delaying.
He wastes time by waiting for the play to give him certainty that Claudius murdered his father.
Hamlet’s delay is caused because of a conflict between action and awareness that makes him consider both sides of the issue.
After seeing the murder scene, Claudius stops the play; Hamlet confirms Claudius's guilt.
Hamlet doubts that the ghost was real; he stages a plan to confirm his suspicions about Claudius: “The play’s the thing wherein I’ll catch the conscience of the King” (2.2.616-617).
The irony is that his revenge could have been complete if he had killed the king then and there, because Claudius was not really praying.
Hamlet cannot act without being certain of the murder himself, which gives him an excuse to procrastinate.
Hamlet doesn't kill Claudius at this point when he’s praying because he believes that killing the king at that moment would be "hire and salary, not revenge!" He simply cannot send Claudius to heaven, where he would surely go if he killed him after praying and purging his sins
2. Killing his mother
What's the author's argument? To what extent do you agree or disagree with his analysis of Hamlet?
Is inaction a tragic flaw? What does this play tell us about inaction, doubt, or procrastination?
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