The Tragedy of Hamlet is a romantic play written by William Shakespeare that focuses on the complications arising from love, death, betrayal, and perceptual ambiguity. Hamlet brilliantly depicts the struggles of departure from conventional revenge and indecisiveness upon actions of the characters. In addition, their desires for romantic and reputational success amongst the Danish court in Elsinore and female influences directly lead to a chain reaction of corruptive reactions that further prevents the state of its pure society. Female characters such as Ophelia and Gertrude serve as instigators for the turmoil of Prince Hamlet’s display of both internal and external conflicts concerning his alleged madness. In William Shakespeare’s Hamlet, female characters, Gertrude and Ophelia serve as the leading cause and effect of Hamlet’s impulsive downfall proven through his own actions of a corrupted mentality.
Following the death of King Hamlet, Gertrude became a leading role in Prince Hamlet’s life not only as his mother but also as his cause to madness. Through her utterly incestual marriage to Claudius shortly after the King’s death, suspicion rose in her accomplice to the murder and her son’s grief. Gertrude does not seem to acknowledge the mental deterioration of her son during his time of grief. Gertrude’s emotional neglect towards Hamlet in her marriage as Claudius’ accomplice is a primary cause of Hamlet’s madness throughout the play. In absence of the tenderness of his own mother, Hamlet is forced to face his mental instability alone while being mentally and verbally attacked by those suspicious of his vengeful actions. Time after time, Gertrude does nothing to aid Hamlet’s sensibility that eventually spirals into madness and vengeful anger towards the murderer of his father. The love of Gertrude, yielding the shameful lust of Claudius, contributes to the ultimate ruin and a twisted idea of love for obscenity. Gertrude and Claudius’ love is not pure, and its lustrous poison spreads amongst the purity of Hamlet and Ophelia. By the end of the play, Gertrude admits that she is “full of artless jealousy is guilt that spills itself in fearing to be spilled” (4.5.23). Gertrude feels guilty for both Hamlet and Ophelia’s craziness because she realizes that she is the reason for their downfall. Finally, Claudius’ unapologetic influence on Gertrude ultimately caused the wrecked relationship between her son and society itself.
Secondly, Ophelia is the most reputable character in Hamlet; however; she is primarily corrupted by the effectiveness of the mad society surrounding her virtue. Throughout the play, Ophelia’s will is too unassertive to stand up for what she desires or feels is unjust. Ophelia “divided from herself and her fair judgment,” and she fails to stand up to Polonius, her cruel and suspicious father when he orders her to cease all contact with her beloved Hamlet (3.1.84). She also allows herself to spy on Hamlet and is caught by Hamlet in the process. At the same time, the major plot ultimately develops into a conflict between Hamlet’s moral universe and Claudius’s world of status and villainy. Both men tear down everything in their path to achieve their own personal revenge. In this case, Ophelia represents the measure of what both Hamlet and society have become. Ophelia represents the significant parallel between the spiraled madness of Hamlet and the madness of the society around her. The sane and healthy love between Hamlet and Ophelia is destroyed by corruption and evil reign in its entirety. The lack of peacefulness, radiance, and love affection ultimately leads to her suicidal death. Ophelia is ultimately the victim of the corruption surrounding her in a society filled with royal status and revengeful supremacies.
Gertrude and Ophelia are female characters from William Shakespeare's Hamlet that contributed to the inevitable domino effect of conflicting internal desires of romantic love and moral character in Prince Hamlet. Hamlet’s mother Gertrude lacked the external affirmation towards Hamlet following the death of his father. Through Gertrude’s silence, Hamlet is incited to suspect his mother of an incestual traitor following her marriage to King Hamlet’s murderer, Claudius. Secondly, Ophelia is ultimately the victim of the corruption surrounding her in a society filled with status and revengeful supremacies. In conclusion, Hamlet is a Shakespearean play of women’s roles in the cause and effect of the connection between the corruption of love and societal damnation. William Shakespeare wrote many plays and pieces of literature with prominent female characters to teach his audiences the powerful effects that moral attitudes and romantic love have on the flow and wellness of a running society.