Hamlet Act II: Subtle Humor and Wise Words.

Hamlet Freewrite

After you watch C Coronado’s Hamlet and read the assigned essay on it, I want you to do a 300 word freewrite in your blog. Just write down your immediate thoughts and impressions. Don’t worry about grammar, spelling, etc. This is just to help you get started on ideas for the final paper.

You can watch the C. Coronado version of Hamlet here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iQyrk04jCxo&feature=BFa&list=PLC9235044C898343C

It’s split into 8 parts that you should be able to see lined up along the bottom of the screen. If you turn on youtube’s autoplay feature, it should jump from one part to the next automatically. Please let me know if you have any problems, though.

There will be a writing assignment for you to do on your blogs tomorrow. Check again later for that assignment.

Here is the assignment for the final out of class essay, which is on Hamlet: hamletpaper.

I’ll post the film on this blog either later tonight or tomorrow.

Hamlet, Act V

Hamlet, Act IV

Here are the main things to take from Hamlet, Act IV:

  • Claudius finds out that Hamlet has killed Polonius and, with the help of Rozencrantz and Guildenstern, tries to find where he hid the body (Scenes I-III).
  • Claudius writes a letter to England with instructions to execute Hamlet when he arrives there and gives it to R & G, who leave for England with Hamlet (Scene III).
  • Hamlet finds out that Fortinbras is sending an army to Poland to reclaim a small patch of land. Inspired by Fortinbras’ determination over something so small, he renews his own determination to kill Claudius (Scene IV).
  • Gertrude is visited by Ophelia, who has lost her mind over the death of her father (Scene V).
  • Laertes returns from France after hearing about the death of his father. He initially blames Claudius and wants to kill him, but Claudius manages to calm him down for the moment (Scene V).
  • Ophelia returns and greets her brother, although she has still clearly lost her mind (Scene V).
  • Horatio receives a letter from Hamlet saying that he stowed on board a pirate ship and is returning to Denmark (Scene VI).
  • After finding out that Hamlet is returning to Denmark, Claudius tells Laertes that Hamlet killed Polonius, and the two make a plan for Laertes to take revenge on Hamlet. Laertes will challenge Hamlet to a fencing duel, but Laertes’ rapier will be poisoned. And, just in case that fails, Claudius will have a glass of poisoned wine on hand to give to Hamlet when he gets thirsty from the duel (Scene VII).
  • Gertrude reveals that Ophelia has fallen into a river and drowned, presumably as a suicide (Scene VII).

Be sure to watch Scene V, taken from the Tennant version version, which shows Ophelia’s madness: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CI3SMQ4iMRE

Ophelia’s madness and death have captured the imaginations of several artists, as you can see on pages 1701-1703 in the BIL. Here are two others, from the 19th century:

Ophelia (1894), John William Waterhouse (1849-1917). Source: http://www.victorianweb.org/painting/jww/paintings/7.html

Ophelia (1851-2), John Everett Millais (1829-1896). Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:John_Everett_Millais_-_Ophelia_-_Google_Art_Project.jpg

For your blog, I want you to write about why you think Ophelia’s madness and death have been such fascinating subjects for artists. How is she portrayed in these paintings? In the film? How do these visual portrayals compare to your own imagining of Ophelia?

Hamlet, Act III