Gertrude and Claudius

by John Updike

Start Free Trial

In what ways is Gertrude a very crucial character in the play "Hamlet"? I'm doing a reasearch paper about how Gertrude is the catalyst of all the events in Hamlet. She started the desire for Claudius to kill Hamlet's Father, for he loved her, she caused Hamlet to be suspicious of Claudius for her hasty decision to marry Claudius, etc. I'd like to gather as much information about this topic as possible. At the moment I can't seem to find any secondary sources to back-up my information appropriately and am hoping this discussion will help.

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

With regard to secondary sources, perhaps you could research the influence of mothers upon main characters/people.  Wasn't it Freud who attributed so much of what one becomes to the mother? (e.g. Psychological studies of disturbed people such as serial killers usually do involve disturbed mothers.) 

Often criticisms of the play will provide some insight to a reader's questions.  See the site listed below as well as other criticisms here on enotes. 

See eNotes Ad-Free

Start your 48-hour free trial to get access to more than 30,000 additional guides and more than 350,000 Homework Help questions answered by our experts.

Get 48 Hours Free Access
Approved by eNotes Editorial Team