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Title: The fourth hamlet.
Authors: Ngoi, Soon Ying.
Keywords: DRNTU::Humanities::Literature
Issue Date: 2011
Abstract: 400 years of Hamlet scholarship has seen the brunt of it focused on its title character up until recent years, but in spite of this, the fascination continues to endure even though his character is often inscrutable to us. In glimpses of the interiority of this character, we continue to chase after him and find ourselves uncertain even as he dies in the last scene, of having ever once met the real Hamlet. The other characters in the play are similarly enigmatic. They are reinterpreted in the shadows of Hamlet’s mind and form extensions of his character. While Hamlet attempts to define himself in opposition to all these other characters who he first mimics and then bests, his sense of existential anxiety winds up increasing when he is confronted with the similarity of his mimicry and the sheer volume of repetitions in the play which appear to surface by chance. By the end of the play, there comes a point where Hamlet realises that there is to be no escaping from the play where even he, is another character. His acceptance of this condition reveals a figure behind the scenes – a fourth Hamlet who has created the shadow play of Hamlet which we are watching.
Rights: Nanyang Technological University
Fulltext Permission: restricted
Fulltext Availability: With Fulltext
Appears in Collections:HSS Student Reports (FYP/IA/PA/PI)

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