What is the universal message in Hamlet's second soliloquy (Act II, Scene II)?
In the soliloquy beginning "Now I am alone. Oh, what a rogue and peasant slave am I!", what is the universal message and is there a specific quote within the selelction that reflects it? Thank you for your help!
1 Answer | Add Yours
In the soliloquy in question, Hamlet's thoughts turn from his specific problems to a general, or universal truth, which is popularly expressed as "Murder will out." He says, "For murder, though it have no tongue, will speak / With most miraculous organ." I am reminded of Bill Sykes' guilty behavior after he murders Nancy in Charles Dickens' Oliver Twist. His own guilt gives him away. Shakespeare has Macbeth say the same thing about murder: "It will have blood, they say; blood will have blood. / Stones have been known to move, and trees to speak; / Augurs and understood relations have / By maggot pies and choughs and rooks brought forth / The secret'st man of blood." (Macbeth, Act 3, Scene 4, lines 151-156) The same truth is illustrated in Dostoyevsky's Crime and Punishment, in several of Edgar Allan Poe's short stories, in Truman Capote's In Cold Blood, and elsewhere.
We’ve answered 317,950 questions. We can answer yours, too.Ask a question