What Excerpt From Act III Of Hamlet Supports The Conclusion That Hamlet Is Critical Of Women?
In Hamlet, William Shakespeare’s tragedy about the Prince of Denmark, Act III features a scene in which Hamlet makes it clear that he is critical of women. In this scene, Hamlet has a conversation with his mother, Queen Gertrude, about her recent marriage to his uncle Claudius.
The most important excerpt from Act III of Hamlet that supports the conclusion that Hamlet is critical of women is when he says, “Frailty, thy name is woman” (1.2.146). This is one of the most famous lines in all of Shakespeare’s works, and it suggests that Hamlet views women as inherently weak and untrustworthy.
In addition to the line quoted above, there is also evidence in the dialogue that suggests that Hamlet is critical of his mother’s actions. For example, he accuses her of exchanging her “eternal blazon” (1.2.67) for a more shameful one, and he is particularly critical of her hasty marriage to Claudius. To Hamlet, Queen Gertrude’s marriage to her brother-in-law is a sign of female weakness, as he believes that she could have chosen a more honorable path.
In short, the Act III scene of Hamlet clearly establishes that Hamlet is critical of women. Whether or not one agrees with his conclusion that women are inherently weak is up for debate, but the evidence in the scene is undeniable.