The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 18.0836 Sunday, 16 December 2007
Date: Thursday, 13 Dec 2007 19:57:48 -0500
Subject: The Manipulators of _Hamlet_
(Thanks to all for some very interesting answers about Helena's
soliloquy, I had nothing new to add in response, but was educated by
several of the comments)
If I may request a new thread....
Reading Scott Shepherd's message about Polonius as master manipulator of
_Hamlet_ makes me wonder if it might not be fun, and also interesting,
to have a round or two here about the various theories, crackpot and
otherwise, that have been put forward over the centuries, as to who the
"real" manipulators of _Hamlet_.
It seems to me that Shakespeare, anticipating the likes of Agatha
Christie, deliberately built in a great deal of suggestiveness as to the
identity of the one or more secret schemers of the play, so that many
different candidates for such a role would be plausible. Starting with
the hero, of course.
And if anyone who brings such a theory forward also knows who was the
first and/or most notable famous exponent thereof, from across the last
four centuries, of any of these theories, even better!
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