What Does To Be Or Not To Be Mean
Why does Hamlet say "to be or not to be" and what does it mean in Hamlet?
I think it is entirely possible that Shakespeare wrote the “To be or not to be” soliloquy as a separate piece expressing his own personal feelings about life and death and then put it away in the bottom drawer, as writers will do, until he found a convenient spot for it when he was writing his play Hamlet. What is important in this soliloquy, and what explains its great popularity, is the truths it tells about human existence, not what it reveals about the character of the moody Prince. We have all personally experienced some of the slings and arrows Hamlet complains about, just by being alive...
(The entire section contains 2 answers and 747 words.)
check Approved by eNotes Editorial
'To be, or not to be' is the famous quote from hamlet. It bases itself around the human condition and draws into question; Why do we struggle with life if we know inevitably we are going to die (which is the mark of humanity).
Hamlet tries to imagine death as eternal sleep (takes away troubles), but even in sleep we are still active through our dreams.
Throughout the play the common theme he asks himself is whether or not it is more noble to just put up with the everything or to fight against hardships.