Miscommunication, Distrust and Death in "Hamlet" Dissertation or Thesis by nfcolbert

Miscommunication, Distrust and Death in "Hamlet"
An analysis of the complications of gendered conversation in William Shakespeare's "Hamlet".
# 152410 | 9,444 words | 29 sources | MLA | 2011 | US
Published on Feb 07, 2013 in Gender and Sexuality (Gender Studies) , Shakespeare (Hamlet)

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This paper discusses how Shakespeare knew well the nature of relationships between men and women and how the verbal styles used in "Hamlet" illustrate some universal truths about women and men in conversation. The paper examines how Claudius is the consummate controller, persistently negotiating and asserting his status at the top of the hierarchy (or at least attempting to) in conversations with everyone in the play and how Gertrude and Ophelia focus on creating unity in community, whether for country or household, and sacrifice dearly for their thwarted attempts. The paper further examines how Hamlet, the "sweet Prince" teeters between exerting control and relinquishing it, injuring the ones he loves the most in the process.

Different Words, Different Worlds
Asymmetries: Women and Men Talking at Cross-purposes
"Put Down That Paper and Talk to Me!": Rapport-talk and Report-talk
"I'll Explain It to You": Lecturing and Listening
Community and Contest: Styles in Conflict
Who's Interrupting? Issues of Dominance and Control
Damned If You Do
"Look at Me When I'm Talking to You": Cross Talk Across the Ages

From the Paper:

"The opening chapter of Tannen's book seems to mirror some of the earliest conversations in the play. Tannen postulates that a man engages in conversation "as an individual in a hierarchal social order in which he [is] either one-up or one-down" (24). The world of Hamlet is nothing if not a hierarchal society where each person has a role, and "in this world, conversations are negotiations in which people try to achieve and maintain the upper hand if they can" (Tannen 24-25). In his opening speech, the newly crowned king, Claudius, regales the court with a tale of how young Fortinbras of Norway has set his sights on conquering Denmark, but that he, the mighty King Claudius, is nipping that action in the bud (1.2.16-39). Claudius is informing his entire court that he is now in charge, and a formidable force with which to be reckoned. Claudius takes this issue of hierarchy into personal conversations as well, when he addresses Laertes, the son of his advisor Polonius."

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Bradley, Andrew Cecil. Shakespearean Tragedy: Lectures on Hamlet, Othello, King Lear, and Macbeth. New York: Macmillan, 1904. Google Books. Web. 10 Apr. 2011. <http://books.google.com/books?id=y-xDAAAAYAAJ&dq=ac+bradley+shakespearean+tragedy+hamlet&source=gbs_navlinks_s>.
  • Byles, Joan Montgomery. "The Problem of the Self and the Other in the Language of Ophelia, Desdemona, and Cordelia." America Imago 46.1 (1989): 37-59. ProQuest 5000. Web. 08 May 2009.
  • Carlisle, Carol J. "Hamlet's 'Cruelty' in the Nunnery Scene: The Actors' Views." Shakespeare Quarterly 18.2 (1967): 129-40. JSTOR. Web. 11 Jan. 2011. <http://www.jstor.org/stable/2867700>.
  • Dreher, Diane E. "Dominated Daughters." Domination and Defiance: Fathers and Daughters in Shakespeare. Lexington: University of Kentucky, 1986. 76-95. Print.
  • Fischer, Sandra K. "Hearing Ophelia: Gender and Tragic Discourse in Hamlet." Renaissance & Reformation 6.1 (1990): 1-10. Academic Search Premier. Web. 11 Jan. 2011.

Cite this Dissertation or Thesis:

APA Format

Miscommunication, Distrust and Death in "Hamlet" (2013, February 07) Retrieved September 23, 2023, from https://www.academon.com/dissertation-or-thesis/miscommunication-distrust-and-death-in-hamlet-152410/

MLA Format

"Miscommunication, Distrust and Death in "Hamlet"" 07 February 2013. Web. 23 September. 2023. <https://www.academon.com/dissertation-or-thesis/miscommunication-distrust-and-death-in-hamlet-152410/>