Essay by x98ccjUniversity, Bachelor's April 2004

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This essay is going to discuss the works of Shakespeare's Hamlet and John Updike's Gertrude and Claudius. It will look to compare and contrast certain aspects of each book in relation to each other. Some central characters in each book will be looked at and how they are similar in each book, along with the views that would lead you to believe that Gertrude and Claudius are truly in love or just lusting over each other. The ghost in each writing will be looked at to see if they relate to each other or not and the character of Polonius will be examined in each of the two works. Also some foreshadowing from Gertrude and Claudius on to Hamlet will be addressed.

Shakespeare's Hamlet has a lot to do with the character of Hamlet himself, as he is the central character in the play. It starts off with the introduction of a ghost who turns out to be in the image of Hamlets murdered father, Old Hamlet. This Ghost plays a vital role in the play because it is the ghost that enduces Hamlet to get revenge for his father murder. In this first act we are introduced to basically all the main characters. We learn that Hamlets mother, Gertrude the queen, is no married to Hamlets uncle, now the King, Claudius. This puts unrest on the kingdom of Denmark because it is almost seen as incest and the fact that it takes place so close to the funeral of the late king. Its also told that a Young Fortinbras is building and army to attack Denmark so there is uneasiness in the land of Denmark. We see a love interest for Hamlet by the name of Ophelia and her father and brother, Polonius and Laertes respectively, are...