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Jennifer TruongMrs. Annalise AttreedCP English 422 January 2019Hamlet’s Preoccupation About The DelayThe ability to carry out missions productively allows positive influence to instill into the society. However, Hamlet chooses to procrastinate and allows death that he could prevent to occur. Therefore, Hamlet’s procrastination is more detrimental to society than Macbeth’s hubris. Procrastination evokes a more detrimental effect to the society as people could miss out opportunity to succeed, lead others to unwanted death, and bring harm to one’s life.  Hamlet’s tragic flaw of procrastination prevents him from the opportunity to act upon his father’s murder and his uncle’s cruelty. Despite the fact that his uncle is guilty, Hamlet denies to take immediate action for the revenge. He hesitates and considers that if he murders Claudius while he is at prayer, Claudius will be in heaven instead of hell. However,”Claudius’s words fly up, his thoughts remain below,” so his “words without thoughts never to heaven go” (Ham. 3.3.97). It would have been a great chance for him to confront his uncle, but Hamlet is pleasing over his procrastination rather than seeking avenge. Furthermore, Hamlet’s procrastination is supported by his comparison to Fortinbras, “a delicate and tender prince” (Ham. 4.4.48). Hamlet admires Fortinbras for his willingness to fight for no good reason because Hamlet’s words of murder are not aligned with his action like Fortinbras. At first, he gives the impression of how he obtains the “cause and will and strength and means to do’t,” however, he realizes “from this time forth his thoughts be bloody or be nothing worth” when his procrastination governs him (Ham. 4.4.35-65). He exasperates over the fact that he has yet to act on the vengeance plan for his murdered father. As Hamlet’s flaw of delay is maintained throughout the play, it provokes a detrimental dilemma to others and himself. In the play, Hamlet’s inability to act is detrimental as he takes everyone with him when he falls. As he is unwilling to murder King Claudius, it leads Ophelia to become a victim of his delay. When the funeral procession for Ophelia begins, Hamlet interprets that the funeral is “with such maimed rites” (Ham. 5.1.202). When he realizes that it is Ophelia who has died, it depicts how Ophelia would not seal her fate with a sin if the murder of her father is not performed by the man she loved. Hamlet’s apparent rejection for her love and her father’s murder forces her into madness, and yet she has no means with which to heal herself. If he has killed the king, then he wouldn’t have killed Ophelia’s beloved father. If he hadn’t killed her father, he wouldn’t have triggered the mental breakdown of Ophelia and drives her to death. Furthermore, the death of Gertrude is caused by Hamlet’s failure to act decisively. If Hamlet proceeds to his vengeance, he would have prevented Gertrude to consume the “drink of poison potion” (Ham. 5.2.318). Gertrude would not drink a poisoned cup that Claudius had meant for Hamlet if he confronts with Claudius earlier. Without procrastination, he could prevent the gory sword fight that involved the presence of poison. As Hamlet agrees to hesitate, his tragic flaw is more detrimental than Macbeth as he allows a domino effect that collides with other characters and himself to destructive downfalls. At the beginning of the play, Macbeth embodies an honorable and courageous trait as he valiantly fights for the kingdom. Macbeth didn’t exhibit any hubris about his possession of the throne until he heard about the witches’ prophecy. Once the idea is trapped inside his head,  it eventually consumes him with excessive pride. Despite his prideful feelings, Macbeth is still a loyal soldier and is apologetic to admit his thoughts about killing the King Duncan. When he does kill the king, he realizes that his violent thoughts are cruel and treacherous. By announcing,  “He is in blood stepped in so far that, should he wade no more, returning were as tedious as to go o’er,”  he reveals his understanding of being a realist and realizes that his action can’t be undone (Mac. 3.4.136). Though his hubris has causes him to follow his reckless plan, he has murdered his own peace when he is committed to the path of destruction. Moreover, he is the victim of the witches when he falls into their trap. As the witches “Laugh to scorn the power of man, for none of woman born shall harm Macbeth”, they invite Macbeth into a false fantasy (Mac. 4.1.90).  Indeed, Macbeth is destined to be ordained and is simply seeking for elevation that matches with his honorable trait. However, the witches fulfill him with hubris when they conclude that he is invulnerable and almost immortal with their words of praise. Ultimately, Macbeth has to confront his own death when the witches trick him. Though, he does not blame them for the false prophecies since he understands that he is the only one person to be blamed. Macbeth’s lust for power is enormous as other characters influence the way he thinks and push him to inevitable downfall, though Hamlet carelessly brings others to destructive downfall based on his option of delay.Hamlet’s procrastination has been illustrated in modern society when it brings a great deal of harm to their life. In the article “Procrastination: A Basic Human Instinct”, the author insists that avoiding the obligations allow negative consequences and anxiety to incurred when modern people can’t complete necessary tasks. The author agrees when she writes “when we put off doing something by telling ourselves that we will do it later, we fail to consider that the temptation to put it off will be just as strong later as it is now” (Smith, 2011). In other words, practicing procrastination continually will develop a vicious cycle that reinforces a lack of discipline. It usually happens when people have anxiety about the important task awaiting them. In short, they get rid of this negative feeling through procrastination. Though, it only helps them feel better temporarily since they will have to confront the reality later. The idea that procrastination prevents people from advancing further is extremely significant because it sheds insight on the difficult problem of procrastinators. It portrays how the accumulation of difficult duties can lower their self-esteem which causes them to be unable to perform adequately. The author complains that “Americans waste millions by not filing their taxes on time and failing to sign up for 401(k) retirement plans.” (Smith, 2011). To put it in another way, people delay because they’re not motivated by their own ability and they assume that their mood and perspective will change in the near future. Once the reality of a deadline sets in, procrastinators feel extreme guilt for the important task that they put off. It evokes a negative shift to others and themselves when they miss the opportunity to alter the negativities or to elevate. On closer inspection, this refers back to Hamlet who has missed out on the possibility to prevent greater conflicts to appear. If he could have taken immediate action, the death of his own would not have occurred. Hamlet’s tendency to procrastinate has provoked harm to his own life, bring more people to destructive downfall, and prevent him from taking opportunity. Even though Hamlet succeeds his vengeance at the end, his flaw provokes the event of a tragedy. Many consequences arise when he procrastinates; he leads others to death that could have been avoided. If Hamlet restrains from pursuing his flaw, the deaths of other people and himself wouldn’t have ended in tragedy. His delay in action has directly contributed to the tragedy when it establishes a negative shift to the society. Works CitedShakespeare, William. Hamlet. Ed. Roma Gill. Oxford: Oxford U Press, 2009. Print.Shakespeare, William. The Tragedy of Macbeth. Literature: British Literature. Common Core ed. Orlando: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2012. 348-431. Print.Smith, E. E. “Procrastination: A Basic Human Instinct.” Psychology Today, Sussex Publishers, 23 June 2011,


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