TO BE OR NOT TO BE
A new rational tone: this soliloquy continues in a deeper and more philosophical approach.
The formal emphasis on "question."
The special usage of language : the feeling that life is a terrible burden: "suffer, troubles, dies, sleep, heartache, natural shocks, mortal, calamity, bear, fardels, weary" These words develop the character of Hamlet as a melancholy man.
The tone, too, is entirely motivated by reason and untouched by passion. There is no other soliloquy that has such a smooth rhythm as this one. It is this rhythm that gives it its tone. It is almost perfectly written in the iambic pentameter.
Thus, Hamlets thoughts here are joined in a logical coherence that marks a great thinker and evokes the theme of man of intellect and inactivity versus man of passion.
The fist half uses an inclusive generalisation as seen through the "us" and the "we." The second half uses impersonal generalisations to arrive at conclusions.
As he transcends the angle of inclusive generalisation he becomes more certain of the truths that he is speaking. The impersonal generalisations take the form of self-evident axioms that apply to all of humanity.
In the soliloquy we come across certain images that can be categorised as tools of destruction. "Slings, Arrows, Arms, Whips and Bodkin." belongs to this category. here Hamlet is faced with the conflict of having to act.
Second of all we should pay attention to the legal or state
related imagery. The "oppressor" "laws delay" "the
insolence of office" "the proud man" and "disprized love" and
"quietus" all belong to this group of images. They resemble the futility of
Hamlets own social struggle against Hamlets own oppressor Claudius.
The legal imagery suggests that suffering is all-powerful and that resistance against it
is futile. The suffering is thus analogous to a social struggle that Hamlet is also