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Hamlet

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What are some motifs in Act IV?

All that spark-notes talks about is incest, hearing, and misogyny. None of those are in Act IV, at least not when I read through it AGAIN. Please I just need someone to tell me one main motif and I will look for it myself in the Act!

  • Hamlet -

    Are you clear on the differences between themes and motifs?

    Motifs: "Motifs are recurring structures, contrasts, and literary devices that can help to develop and inform the text’s major themes."

    There is wording in Act IV when Gertrude is talking to Claudius that is there for the "incest" angle. (For one thing, the mere fact that she's married to her former brother-in-law was considered incestuous. Read up on Henry VIII's history to see what this might have been hinting at.)

    And that's only one. I'm amazed you aren't finding examples enough to fill three essays (wording, words and phrases with double-meanings, hints, structures of sentences and lines in main characters' speeches, etc.)!

    http://www.sparknotes.com/shakespeare/hamlet/themes.html

    http://www.sparknotes.com/shakespeare/hamlet/section10.rhtml

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