The feeling dealing with his family problems and

Theplot of Hamlet shows many differentthemes of life and literature. The impossibility of certainty, the complexityof his actions and others, and the mysteries of death and dying itself. Thewhole premises of Hamlets actions are him deciding whether or not he hasanything to live for anymore, especially after his own father’s death and the remarriageof his own mother to his uncle. The whole reason for his decision to stay aliveis his nagging need for revenge and his fear of death.

Just like the most reoccurringtheme in existentialism, the feeling of being alienated among others due to thesituations put before them and the thoughts that they have, Hamlet feels thissame sort of feeling dealing with his family problems and well as theUnderground Man and his relationship with the outside world. They both thoughtout the way confrontations would occur and the act of actually going throughwith it. However, Hamlet was actually a man of action unlike the Undergroundman.             In the piece of literature, Notes from the Underground, many of thefeelings and moments that the Underground Man experiences are very similar tothe thoughts that Hamlet has during his time of self-realization and plot forrevenge. The Underground Man was not a man of action, “I swear, gentlemen, thatto be too conscious is an illness – a real thorough illness.

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“1 He was a man that was too hyperconsciousof his actions and surroundings and the outcomes of what could possibly happenif certain situations were to occur. He was self-aware that his hesitancy toact on his thoughts divided him and other men. Hamlet, on the other hand, was aman of action but he was also hyperaware of his own thoughts and theconsequences of his plans.

This sets him apart from others whichstems his anguish and discontent towards the general public. He thought out thedestruction of his uncle and the exact way he was going to do it all andpossibly how it would end. He was prepared for what revenge would be accompaniedby and he was not afraid of the results. The Underground Man stated that, “Withpeople who know how to revenge for themselves and to stand up for themselves,how is it done? Why, when they are possessed, let us suppose, by the feeling ofrevenge, then for the time there is nothing else but the feeling left in theirwhole being.” 2I believe that is what Hamlet felt as he learned about the murder of his fatherand the marriage of his mother to the incestualized traitor, the pure anger andneed for revenge overpowered any other feeling in his body, which in the longrun pushed away others. Once again, the problem is rooted in theirown self-consciousness. The men that the Underground Man thought was normal actedimmediately and without thought about their instincts. Opposite of this kind ofman, who the Underground Man considers stupid but manly and somewhat respectedin a way, the highly conscious Underground Man is nothing more than a mouse.

Whilethe normal man can think and carry out an act of revenge as an act of justiceand not put too much though into it, the Underground Man, when wronged into anact of revenge, is too conscious of all the factors of revenge to actually gothrough with the action with genuine faith and confidence. Therefore, he endsup slinking back into his underground hole to think on whatever wrong has beendone to him until it has almost consumed him. This will always happen to menlike him because they are too afraid to act on their own emotions. Both ofthese men are lonely and set apart from others, because of their uniqueness andbelief that no one will be able to fully understand them.

            Hamlet’s soliloquy of “To be or notto be?” relates to death to the binary opposition of The Underground Man’s “manof action” versus “man or consciousness”  due to the fact that Hamlet is debating tohimself whether or not he should kill himself or continue his life. Throughoutthe entire play, Hamlet is struggling with the battle of ending it all or beingmiserable but alive. “To be or not to be – that is the question: Whether ’tisnobler in the mind to suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune, or totake arms against a sea of troubles and, by opposing, end them.”3 He speaks of the sorrow hefeels for the love of his father, mother, and Ophelia. The love he has for hisfather is what generates this strong feeling of revenge and action. He alsofeels betrayed by his mother because of her marriage soon after her husband andhis own father’s death.

He questions whether or not people shouldexist or not, or if death is not as bad. He does not want to continue in hislife as depressed and upset as he is in his current state but he also fearswhat death may bring and does not know the outcome. Thinking about the uncertaintyof death “makes cowards of us all”4.

 He comes to a realization that he no longerwants to be hung up on his father’s death and wants to take action of what hasbeen done, he cannot be dead in order to carry out what he has planned to dothe whole play. Socrates’s in Apology speaks about how because he knows nothing about death he cannotfear it. He says that he fears injustice as a more known evil then death, whichcorrelates with the ending of Hamlet andthe duel between himself and Laertes and his need to bring justice to his deadfather, even if he is stabbed and eventually killed while doing so. He, justlike Socrates at the end of his trial, no longer fears death for their passionfor justice and, in Hamlet’s case revenge, out ways the fear of death and whatmay come after.  Socrates believed that facingdeath would not seem to be a matter of courage because facing something thatone does not (and should not) fear is not courage.1 Fyodor,Dostoyevsky, “Underground,” Notes fromthe Underground, September 17, 2017, pp. 4 2 Ibid.

, 7.3 WilliamShakespeare, McDougal Littell, “Hamlet”, Hamletand Related Readings, 1997, pp. 123 4 Ibid.


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