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THE PORTRAYAL OF WOMEN Strong ambitious and independent These are all characteristics that are associated with many of the women today The role of women has made great strides over past eras as we move closer toward a state of equality From labels such as Frailty thy name is womanI II 46 females now are productive confident members of society Women now have a powerful voice in the occurrences of today However society was not always so accepting of this idea William Shakespeares Hamlet exhibits societys submissive view of the female during the Elizabethan era In Shakespeares Hamlet Gertrude and Ophelia portray women who are romantically passionate but are frail passive people lacking the precedence to make decisions concerning their own lives Firstly the characters Gertrude and Ophelia lacked the confidence to voice an opinion in the decisions being made about their lives They were under the direction of their male counterparts and were obedient to their wishes To illustrate rather than continuing to voice her desire to continue her relationship with Hamlet Ophelia willingly accepts her fathers order to from this time forth Have you so slander any moments leisure As you give words or talk with the lord HamletIIII132-134 Although it is apparent that her interest and desire to continue her relationship with Lord Hamlet is considerable Ophelia obeys Polonius with no restraint She also gives her acceptance of her brothers wish for her to stay away from Hamlet without any protest I shall the effect of this lesson keepI III 45 Polonius refers to Ophelia as Ay springes to catch woodcocksIIII115 implying she lacks the intelligence to resist the traps of a pursuing male Ophelia continues to be exhibit her passive and powerless ways as Polonius solely decides to At such a time Ill loose my daughter to himII II 160 This allows King Claudius and
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