Shakespeare’s “Hamlet” as an Archetype: a Comparative Analysis

Elena Luludova

Almaty Branch of Saint-Petersburg University of Humanities and Social Sciences, Kazakhstan. ORCID: Email:

Volume IX, Number 3, 2017 I Full Text PDF

DOI: 10.21659/rupkatha.v9n3.10

Received July 25, 2017; Revised September 01, 2017; Accepted September 05, 2017; Published September 20,  2017.


Canonical works like Shakespeare’s Hamlet are always popular and are always in demand. However, the advancements in the stage and screen art and cinematography give way to new artistic interpretations of Hamlet with significant plot differences. Therefore, Shakespeare’s Hamlet is considered as an archetype with its subsequent interpretations. Relevant research methods include structural-semiotic and structural-functional analysis, comparison and system analysis. In addition, research experiences of domestic and foreign scholars on this subject have been summarized. The analysis of different interpretations of this work in its text, theatrical and cinematic forms shows that the changes depend on scriptwriters (directors). Most frequent changes refer to the dialogues, time, and place. All interpretations reveal the tendency to keep the emotional content of the text intact. Thus, the interpretation of the Shakespeare’s Hamlet is influenced by time change and by the cultural environment, where a new story is created. This is confirmed by comparative analysis of films by Kozintsev and Zeffirelli.

Keywords: Interpretation of “Hamlet”, Shakespeare’s tragedy, individual perception, scene changes, typological features.