In William Shakespeare”s Hamlet, women play an important role. They are the ones whom the men use to play out their nefarious plots. They are quite easily manipulated and have almost no say in anything. It seems as though Shakespeare thought of them as tools, as most men did at the time. Ophelia is the first woman in the play who seems to be being manipulated. Her father, Polonius, uses her to spy on Hamlet. He sets her up in a hall, where she is to meet Hamlet Polonius and King Claudius spy on them. She goes along with this, even though Hamlet is the man she loves.Order now
Her father is so easily able to convince her that Hamlet does not actually love her, that it is no wonder young women of the time would nearly always marry the man their father chose out for them. Gertrude is not immune to this mistreatment. She has no trouble believing that there was no foul play involved in the death of her husband. Claudius is so convincing, he even gets her to marry him. The fact that their marriage happens a mere few weeks after Hamlet Sr. “s death goes to show how quickly women of the time turned their back on things that no longer interested them.
If her dead husband could not provide her with some divertissement, she wanted nothing to do with him; she certainly didn”t want to waste her time grieving. She felt that Claudius would be someone fun and could give her what she wanted, so without thinking about those around her, especially Hamlet, she went ahead and married him. She also betrays Hamlet by telling the king of his visit to her room. She tells him of how he killed Polonius and made her swear not to tell him. The fact that she could betray her own son for her husband, who is not even his father, is proof that the man controlled women they were married to.
In conclusion, it is evident that women were not strong-willed individuals in William Shakespeare”s time. They did what was asked of them without much of a fight. This certainly did not help with their oppression. It was not until women started standing up for their rights that they were heard and taken seriously. It is a shame that it took so long for them to do it. There may have been many intelligent women who may have helped invent or create things that would have greatly helped civilization, unfortunately mankind missed out on that opportunity.