As per usual, that hiatus was accidental. The other bartender at my work quit, and I have not had a day off in a million years, and it has been very difficult on these ol’ bones.
Quick comments on Act IV:
- Hamlet states, “The body is with the King, but the King is not with the body. The King is a thing of…nothing”(IV.ii.26-28). Exhibit A) Capital “K” on the King. Exhibit B) Discord of soul and body, which translates to “nothing”. Exhibit C) We never see a burial for Polonius.
- England is seen as the cure for the poison that is Hamlet’s madness.
- I’m going to stretch is a little regarding Ophelia, meaning I’m about to make some assumptions and throw them around like a freshmen in a college Humanities class trying to win over their peers. She’s told that her spurning Hamlet in his love is the cause of his madness–the same madness that leads him to kill her father through a curtain–so, methinks perhaps she blames herself for the death of her father and the madness of her love. Translating to her going crazy and offing herself, because she has been made to believe that this is all her fault.
Now, to quote a gravedigger:
It must be se offendendo, it cannot be else. For here lies the point: if I drown myself wittingly, it argues an act, and an act hath three branches–it is to act, to do, to perform…
“In self-defense” is the simple translation of se offendendo. Yet he’s arguing for an act that takes place in the will, in full knowledge of the action. He even uses the term “perform” which I have spoken about the language of plays being in plays ad nauseam, so I won’t go into how Hamlet seems self-aware to the point that he almost realizes he’s in a play, again. Which brings me to my point–to know, in the clown’s terms, is to act–which has been an overarching tension in this entire play. Hamlet knows his course, and the only ramification of this knowing is to act upon it–leaving his mother, Ophelia and Laertes in the cross-fire.
The effect of Hamlet on the other players brings me to my final point (though I could go on for days, but I simply don’t have days, as I am super behind schedule) regarding Horatio. “Tell my story,” is what Hamlet asks in his dying breath. Why is this important? Well, Hamlet, you’re one of the most self-aware-of-being-in-a-play character I have yet to have the pleasure of meeting, and I have a feeling that may have something to do with it.
I have more on that, but a busy schedule, and this needs. To. Get. Posted.