Despite the fact that few women of Shakespeare’s age had rights or social power, Shakespeare gravitated towards writing strong, developed, and empowered women, the writer seemingly having a modern opinion of the female sex. However, Ophelia from Hamlet, is often criticized for not being able to think for herself and her eventual decline into madness. Critics generally perceive her as weak and baseless. The criticism of Ophelia is so strong that there’s even a condition named after her called the Ophelia Syndrome, where a person relies upon another’s thoughts and opinions to form their own action.
Based strictly on the script, her role in the story and relationship with other characters, particularly Hamlet, come off as ambiguous. Her obedience to her father makes her seem passive, and whether or not Hamlet truly cares for her is unclear. Truly, the text is open for interpretation on Ophelia’s function and character.
What do you think Ophelia’s role in the story of Hamlet is? Do you think she is a strong, independent character or a weak one who solely does what she is told? Did Hamlet just string her along or did he truly care for her?
Continue reading “The Ophelia Syndrome: A Character Analysis and Discussion”
Once upon a time, when I was President of the Honors Program to be exact, I was sitting during in a fascinating, Honors-exclusive lecture by a psychology professor on the psychology of scent. Apparently, scent is a more powerful factor than I had ever realized. It was during this lecture that I learned:
- Aside from lifestyle factors, scent is the number one indicator of compatibility in romantic relationships.
- If someone of the opposite sex smells bad to you, it may just be because your immune systems are too similar. Genetic diversity is a good thing so your body is saying, “Hey there! Don’t fornicate with this individual because you’ll probably produce immunity compromised babies!”
- Birth control, however, negates this bodily function. So often times, when women go off birth control to get pregnant and are having fertility issues, their partner suddenly smells bad to them.
- The amount of tips a stripper or pole dancer receives when she is ovulating usually goes up by 200% because of the pheromones she’s giving off and entering the noses of on lookers. On the flip side, they go down when she is menstruating. For the record, I don’t endorse this kind of behavior but I do find it to be an interesting statistic.
Continue reading “Bookish Candles and the Power of Scent”