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Home :: Archive :: 2004 :: December ::
Greenblatt's Hamlet
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 15.2040  Thursday, 2 December 2004

[1]     From:   Edmund Taft <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 01 Dec 2004 09:00:07 -0500
        Subj:   Greenblatt's Hamlet

[2]     From:   Michael B. Luskin <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 1 Dec 2004 09:25:43 EST
        Subj:   Re: SHK 15.2034 Greenblatt's Hamlet


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Edmund Taft <
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Date:           Wednesday, 01 Dec 2004 09:00:07 -0500
Subject:        Greenblatt's Hamlet

David Bishop writes, "Another way of looking at [*Hamlet*] is that
Shakespeare does not excise motive so much as he multiplies it, and
submerges it, at times, into a murky area where a character may think
and feel without becoming fully aware of what he thinks and feels."

Surely this is right, and the critic who has done the most to illuminate
this aspect of Shakespeare's art is Harry Berger, Jr., who uses the
concepts of "acknowledgement" and "a failure to acknowledge" to help
uncover what a character may feel or think without being wholly aware of
what is really motivating him or her.

Interestingly, I don't think Berger has written about *Hamlet,* but he's
done some great stuff on *King Lear* and *Measure for Measure.*

Ed Taft

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Michael B. Luskin <
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Date:           Wednesday, 1 Dec 2004 09:25:43 EST
Subject: 15.2034 Greenblatt's Hamlet
Comment:        Re: SHK 15.2034 Greenblatt's Hamlet

 >supply the rationale for killing a king who is now a publicly proven
 >tyrant, who has murdered the heir to the throne. Claudius's tyranny is
proved by
 >the commission in which he suborned the king of England to kill Hamlet,

I am not sure if this is quite correct.  I don't think that Hamlet has
"exposed" Claudius as the murderer of King Hamlet, or the author of the
plot to kill him in England.  That is why he complains, that if he had
time, he could tell a tale.  And it is why he asks Horatio to do it for him.

Michael B. Luskin

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