Presentation on theme: "Setting: Denmark, Elsinore Castle King Fortinbras’ Uncle King Fortinbras Prince Fortinbras Claudius King Hamlet Queen Gertrude Prince Hamlet Polonius Laertes."— Presentation transcript:
Setting: Denmark, Elsinore Castle King Fortinbras’ Uncle King Fortinbras Prince Fortinbras Claudius King Hamlet Queen Gertrude Prince Hamlet Polonius Laertes Ophelia Horatio
Setting: Denmark, Elsinore Castle King Fortinbras’ Uncle King Fortinbras Prince Fortinbras Claudius King Hamlet Queen Gertrude Prince Hamlet Polonius Laertes Ophelia Horatio Wittenberg University 30 years old! The Lord Chamberlain is one of the chief officers of the Royal Household Norway
FULL TITLE · The Tragedy of Hamlet, Prince of Denmark AUTHOR · William Shakespeare TYPE OF WORK · Play GENRE · Tragedy, revenge tragedy LANGUAGE · English TIME AND PLACE WRITTEN · London, England, early seventeenth century (probably 1600–1602) DATE OF FIRST PUBLICATION · 1603, in a pirated quarto edition titled The Tragicall Historie of Hamlet; 1604 in a superior quarto edition SETTING (TIME) · The late medieval period, though the play’s chronological setting is notoriously imprecise SETTINGS (PLACE) · Denmark
WHY SHOULD YOU CARE ABOUT HAMLET? Hamlet is having a teenage crisis. Okay, so he doesn't dye his hair and plaster pictures of Fall Out Boy all over his walls, but he does start wearing all black and talking to himself a lot—the 16th century equivalent of keeping a video diary. He's got a crush on a girl who might be cheating on him; he doesn't like the guy his mom remarried; and he feels a lot of pressure to live up to his dad's expectations. In other words, Hamlet is just like us. Sure, he's got bigger problems. (And ghosts.) But his mysterious inner life, his roller coaster of emotions, his struggle to figure out what to do with his life, his conflicted feelings about his parents—this is the stuff that every coming-of-age novel (and movie) is made of. If you want the scholarly version, we can say that you should care about Hamlet because it just might mark the beginning of a new kind of literature that focuses on the struggles and conflicts within a single individual, rather than on the external conflicts between individuals. Or we can make it even simpler, and say that Hamlet just might be Western literature's first modern man—or modern teenager.
Hamlet was written around the year 1600 in the final years of the reign of Queen Elizabeth I, who had been the monarch of England for more than forty years and was then in her late sixties. The prospect of Elizabeth’s death and the question of who would succeed her was a subject of grave anxiety at the time, since Elizabeth had no children, and the only person with a legitimate royal claim, James of Scotland, was the son of Mary, Queen of Scots, and therefore represented a political faction to which Elizabeth was opposed. (When Elizabeth died in 1603, James did inherit the throne, becoming King James I.) It is no surprise, then, that many of Shakespeare’s plays from this period, including Hamlet, concern transfers of power from one monarch to the next. These plays focus particularly on the uncertainties, betrayals, and upheavals that accompany such shifts in power, and the general sense of anxiety and fear that surround them.
Someone we don’t necessarily think a lot about … Fortinbras, what do we need to know? He's a Norwegian prince with a trigger finger (or a trigger army) who seems to be able to inspire a lot of love and battle lust in his subjects. His dad Old Fortinbras, former King of Norway, made a bet with Old Hamlet and wound up losing his life and some important Norwegian territory in the process. Naturally, young Fortinbras now has to reclaim the land his father lost. Fortinbras takes immediate action by raising an army to reclaim Norway's lost territories. Though his uncle (the current king of Norway) at first convinces Fortinbras not to attack Denmark, in the end, prince Fortinbras just can’t stop himself … What will we see?
Choose your character to trace! King Hamlet Prince Hamlet Gertrude Claudius Laertes Ophelia Horatio Polonius