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Analyzing Sacrifices Within Literature

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: English Literature
Wordcount: 689 words Published: 18th May 2017

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“One can survive everything nowadays, except death, and live down anything, except a good reputation.” Oscar Wilde said, during the time of great Plague where many people are dying instantly and he intended that now a day’s people die but the people will never forget what it is to be living with the infection. In the play Hamlet by William Shakespeare, death of the characters is also similar to a plague that spreads all across and eventually they pass away. Many human beings lose their lives each day as a result of their own self-centered wrong doing; there are others whose deaths are an end result of manipulation from the royalty. The authentic tragedy of Hamlet is not that of Hamlet or his own family but of Polonius’ family deaths because they sacrificed their lives and were the innocent who were involved in order to make justice for king Hamlet.

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Sacrifice might end suffering but, causes more pain to the others who cared and loved you. Once a child dies he/she might forget they existed in this world but, the parents of the children will be devastated by the pain that caused them for the rest of their lives and will remember them forever. Gandhi’s death was one of the heartbreaking histories in mankind. His work has been never forgotten, people still remember the pain he suffered to achieve the goal that he aimed for. Hamlets death not only caused the pain to his best friend but also changed the Fortinbras point of view on the war. He realized that not only there are soldiers in war but, also they are in everyday life and that they try anything and everything to help others or to succeed in their own goal. In hamlet the character Ophelia, she kills herself by drowning underwater. Ophelila’s suicide devastated her brothers heart filled with so much sorrow and anger. Her death not only influenced his brother but also Hamlets mother Gertude because she wanted Ophelia to be her daughter in law as Gertrude says “I hop’d thou shouldst have been my Hamlet’s wife” (5.1.233). Malcom X use to say “Just because the heartbeat stop that doesn’t mean that all memories and feelings for the dead would go away”.

Gandhi’s significance on sacrifice is “The sacrifice which causes sorrow to the doer of the sacrifice is no sacrifice. Real sacrifice lightens the mind of the doer and gives him a sense of peace and joy. The Buddha gave up the pleasures of life because they had become painful to him.” He said a sacrifice cannot be ended in sadness but it can be changed if the person receives peace from it. Innocent people died in Hamlet to give peace to King Hamlets ghost and to hamlet, so that he can make peace with his revenge. At the end of the play Hamlet knew he is going to die, this is obvious on several occasions where Hamlet illustrates to others that he just wanted to end his life of the treacheries. Sure, Hamlet’s actions throughout the play make him seem mad, but in reality, this madness was just a tactic of his in his plan to get revenge for his fathers’ wrongful death and justice.

Contrary to accepted belief, the tragedy connected with Hamlet is not just about Hamlet or his own family. It is, however, about the sacrifices that the Polonius’ family has gave, whose deaths are not the result of any sins they omit but by their mortal manipulated by Hamlet and Claudius for explanations they are unaware of. Although the death of Polonius’ family stands out as being for the most part tragic, many other characters in the play are killed as well. In fact, the death of a character in Hamlet almost becomes commonplace near the end of the play. Perhaps Hamlet had never been taught killing out of anger was wrong, maybe he thought it was the punishment his Uncle deserved. Maybe the most important thing though is to be at peace with yourself, be happy with yourself, and with your actions. This above all: to thine own self be true (1.3.84), that is all that you can hope for from Hamlet; that he was above all else, true to himself.


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