A main focus on the allusions and comedy within the novel as well as references to the allusions to Hamlet throughout the novel.

Essay by sweetld215High School, 12th gradeA+, September 2003

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In Stoppard's play Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead

there are many allusions to the play Hamlet which contribute to

the meaning of the play and helps the reader better understand

what is happening. In the tragedy, Hamlet Rosencrantz and

Guildenstern are two very minor characters whom the reader hardly

hears from throughout the course of the play. However, in Rosen

crantz and Guildenstern are Dead those two minor characters turn

into the main characters and the play is told from their point

of view using an abundance of slapstick/Abbot and Costello come

dy. The three most prevalent allusions within the play are: both

plays contained a disorder theme; however, it is greatly enhanced

within Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead , in Hamlet Rosen

crantz and Guildenstern seemed like one character with two

voices, but in the second play they are two different characters

with two different voices, and in Hamlet there were very few

light scenes while Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead was full

of slapstick humor.

In Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead the disorder theme

is greatly enhanced throughout the play. The first example of

disorder is the impossible run of "heads" while Rosencrantz and

Guildenstern are flipping coins. "Heads... The process is re

peated . Heads. Heads. Heads... a weaker man might be moved to

re-examine his faith, if in nothing else at least in the law of

probability. Heads." (pg 11-12) Ros and Guil had been flipping

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Shcoins for a good part of the day and every time the coins came up

a heads. It was an impossible occurrence of heads which adds to

the disorder theme and how everything went "haywire" after the

messenger came. Another example of the disorder theme is when

Ros and Guil had no clue what time of day...