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Home :: Archive :: 2004 :: March ::
The Three Sons in Hamlet
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 15.0755  Thursday, 25 March 2004

From:           Edmund Taft <
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Date:           Tuesday, 23 Mar 2004 10:36:57 -0500
Subject:        The Three Sons in Hamlet

Jay writes that his interest in Hamlet lies in the besieged state of
[Hamlet's] mind. Well, yes, of course. And that's directly related to
the issue of how to treat others.  Should Hamlet engage others with
respect for their personhood and freedom and innate dignity - as he does
Horatio, for example? Or should he adopt the ethic of his own father -
use others -- even sacrifice their lives - to get what he wants?  He
moves from one approach to another as the play progresses. In key scenes
like 3.1 and 3.4, both ethics coexist in a way that wonderfully
complicates the action and Hamlet's mental state - exactly Jay's interest.

Sean himself points out that Fortinbras uses an army to capture a little
piece of Poland. Why doesn't he do the same in Denmark?

Ed Taft

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