The neglect of women in a patriarchal society. In the patriarchal society, women’s ideas are not valued, they are only seen as the executor and receiver of male commands and demands.
Shakespeare his tragic work Hamlet, He implicitly implied the dangers of women’s participation in politics at the level of sovereignty and the many necessary links with political status. At the same time, men hold the main power. The only two female characters in Hamlet, Gertrude and ophelia, reflect the general status of women in Elizabethan times. Women are oppressed by men in life and always have lower status. Ophelia and Gertrude had little power although they were members of the royal family, because limited legal and social status rights were found in Elizabethan society.
Women have no ideas of their own, and their behavior is restricted like a tool, so their status is low. On the other hand, women are also a tool for men who seize power and use them to fulfill their ambitions, so women also play an important role in the play.
Ophelia is a good embodiment of this theme, She is a humble position in Hamlet. ‘To Hamlet and his flirtation you must regard it as a youthful impulse, a violet of early spring that is precocious and dying, a minute’s fragrance and delight, and that is all.’ Living in the shadow of her father and brother, ophelia cannot pursue love and has no right to choose, but is absolutely obedient. “From now on, I forbid you to chat with your highness Hamlet whenever you have leisure. Keep your wits about you; Ophelia: I will obey you, father.” Ophelia loved hamlet, When her father found out about this, he immediately stopped her from dating Hamlet. She did not say a retort, but obeyed his words. She is a woman who does not have her own independent opinion. She has no thoughts and will not resist the things and requirements that she thinks are wrong. Instead, she always obeys them. “Let him meet ophelia as if they had met by chance. Her father and I were to act as spies.” She obeyed the king’s order to judge whether Hamlet had become crazy because of herself. In the face of these demands, she did not reject them but finished the task like a thoughtless machine following the instructions. Obviously, women at that time did not have any rights, just a man at the mercy of the props, long suppressed, no idea of their own. And then When Ophelia knew that Hamlet has become madness and her father died, she chose to commit suicide, because she not like men to avenge their emotions and even to kill her to kill people, she doesn’t have the power and the ability to revenge, on the contrary, if she is a male, maybe she can try to use his power to revenge for his father. From beginning to end, she was just a tool to be used, to gain power more conveniently, while she herself had no power at all. Ophelia told her father Hamlet that ‘he pestered me with love in a noble way’. Polonius insisted that Hamlet would only have sex with ophelia with Laertes’ support. He described her chastity as ‘the treasure of chastity.’ Ophelia is regarded as an innocent girl by her father and brother. Shakespeare associates ophelia with flowers and emphasizes her innocence. When polonius was killed, ophelia went mad. Shakespeare’s portrayal of ophelia as a naive, overprotected girl was not uncommon in her time, when her rights were limited and her status inferior to that of men. Ophelia does not appear frequently in the novel, but it plays an important role in promoting the development of the plot.
In hamlet, The image of queen Gertrude has been the subject of many different controversies. Gertrude Joe is a willing to do anything for his queen status in violation of the ethical bottom line of woman. “A brute without reason would have mourned longer — she would have married my uncle, my father’s brother.” Hamlet compares his mother to an animal and satirizes her for turning into an incest quilt to keep her queen. In order to keep her position as queen, she had married Claudius only a few days after the old Hamlet’s death. Incest is simply a case of not wanting to lose your power. “I shall obey you. And for your part, Ophelia , I do wish that your good beauties be the happy cause of hamlet’s wildness.” When the king with Ophelia to determine whether a Hamlet, mad because she the queen didn’t stand up for his son, Hamlet but agree with their ideas, in my opinion, I think the power and the son in front, the queen will not hesitate to choose to stay in their power, she is a very selfish woman. Hamlet advised Gertrude Joe not to contact the king Claudius before , but she did not listen to Hamlet, As far as I am concerned, the queen knows what she is doing, so she is a person who is willing to do anything for the sake of power, and will not keep the position of queen because of the good or bad characters.
Of course, in hamlet, men also play an really important role and are associated with power. Hamlet was a beloved prince, but he was a sexist. ‘A brute without reason will grieve longer — she will marry my uncle… Only a month, her eyes with tears of hypocrisy have not gone red and swollen before she married.’ Hamlet thought his mother even more than her ‘beast’ feelings, but also because of my mother’s a move that Hamlet’s character is complicated and paranoid, at the same time there is hatred, because of the queen’s remarried to promote the development of the plot, let Hamlet has doubt on the affection and love, become helpless and desperate, started to become extreme, and even more questions about women. “What do you do for a living, however, in less than a month –Don’t remind me of you — frailty, your name is woman! — — — –‘ There is no doubt that Hamlet is a sexist, he expressed the attitude towards women in that era, he looked down on women, thinking that women are the pronoun of weakness, is the symbol of landmark buildings. In this soliloquy Hamlet expresses his disgust at the behavior of his mother queen Gertrude. It seemed to me that he was more than angry with his mother. Hamlet attacks the whole woman, declaring that all women are weak and fickle. ‘Take you to the convent: why are you a proliferating sinner?’ Hamlet tells ophelia to go to a convent. In Elizabethan English, ‘convent’ is also slang for ‘brothel’. In this sense, Hamlet accuses ophelia of being a dissolute and treacherous woman like his mother. Hamlet’s rebuke caused ophelia to have a nervous breakdown and finally commit suicide. The suicide of ophelia also shows that women at that time were very vulnerable and had no power.
On the other hand, the male leads the power and position in hamlet. “These are snares for the foolish snipe. I know that when passion burns, a person will say whatever oath.” we can see that the Polonius gives bad comments when he does not understand Hamlet’s true thoughts, regardless of her love for Hamlet’s daughter. So in Hamlet men don’t include women in their decision-making. “From now on, I forbid you to chat with your highness Hamlet whenever you have leisure.” Polonius restrained his daughter Ophelia from falling in love with Hamlet. However, the Ophelia did not reject her father’s unreasonable demands and had no right to refuse, because the male represents everything in power. In fact, in Hamlet, we can see that only the king uses his power all the time, and the article does not mention that the queen uses her power, so my point is that the woman has a queen but cannot use her power. In his view, his own interests are above all, in order to benefit by fair means or foul, and women are only a part of his interests.
Take the women in Hamlet as an example. In the lives of Gertrude and ophelia, they are manipulated by men to do what they cannot do. As a result, women in that era were often viewed as pawns in the male political and social game. Both men and women play a very necessary role, but men dominate all the power and women don’t, they don’t have any right to decide. Men can use their power to decide anything, but women can’t. They are more like tools used by men to fight for power.