How would you describe the rhythm of the initial conversation between Hamlet and his mother?
What is ironic about Polonius’s death? What “job” has he assumed in the moments before his death?
Count how many times Hamlet refers to eyes and ears in his speech to his mother in lines 63-98. What is he trying to force his mother to understand?
Why does Hamlet stop screaming at his mother? How does this remind us of what Hamlet was warned in I.v? What does this episode say of Hamlet’s madness (our impression as readers vs. Gertrude’s impression, for instance)?
Explain Hamlet’s line “I must be cruel only to be kind” (III.iv.199) in the context of his character and the maneuvering of the other characters throughout the play.