Resituating Freud’s Hamlet

by David J. Gordon

December 4, 2007


Hamlet’s inner conflict, though rich in oedipal imagery, is dramatized as the product of his immediate situation rather than of childhood trauma. It revolves around the old chivalric code of blood revenge and honor-at-all costs, and is implicit in the text, hence not “repressed” by the protagonist. Hamlet’s prolonged wrestling with this conflict climaxes in a soliloquy that scathingly attacks the code’s exemplification in Fortinbras, leaving the issue of revenge at an impasse. To prepare his hero for the act of killing Claudius, Shakespeare deleted and altered some crucial passes (as we see by assessing the differences between the Second Quarto and Folio texts). The effect of these changes is to diminish Hamlet’s turmoil by introducing evidence of his psychological growth, evidence that Freud and Ernest Jones ignored and might well have considered.


Early and late in his psychoanalytic career Freud took pride in his interpretation of Shakespeare’s Hamlet, which supported his belief in the central importance of the Oedipus Complex.1 The interpretation has not worn well. Thoughts of a murdered father and sexualized mother married to the murderer undoubtedly oppress the play’s protagonist, but many critics, for different reasons, have demurred from Freud’s hypothesis that it is Hamlet’s unconscious identification with the guilty uncle that best explains his delay in fulfilling the Ghost’s command to revenge. Unable to speak freely in Claudius’s corrupt court, Hamlet must express his anguish privately or indirectly, yet the inner conflict entailed in his disgust is not, in my view, quite repressed. His feeling that he ought to avenge his father’s murder for honor’s sake is opposed by a contrary feeling that also has moral force, a contrary force that is implied throughout the play. It is shown by Hamlet’s aversion to the very code of blood revenge that the Ghost invokes, a legacy of the medieval chivalric tradition that was fast losing its authority and glamour in late sixteenth century England.2 The characters in the play who best exemplify this code, with its enviable but obsolescent moral clarity, are Laertes, who, to avenge his father’s death, would “cut [Hamlet’s] throat in a church” and Fortinbras, who is judged by Hamlet in a more negative light than is generally recognized. The Ghost too, who appears in the first scene dressed in the armor of a warrior decades out of date and commands blood revenge, exemplifies this code but ambiguously because, a) Hamlet has idealized his father and, b) Shakespeare allows us to see the Ghost in both a Catholic and Protestant light, both honest and deceptive.

     This line of argument requires us to be dissatisfied also with the word “delay,” however pervasive it is in Hamlet criticism, because it implies too unequivocally that Hamlet ought to kill Claudius, i.e. that Shakespeare endorses this ought. Although Hamlet, emotionally attracted as he still is by the heroic past, insistently berates himself for not heeding the Ghost’s command, his very insistence suggests that the what he really searching for, and with increasing desperation during four acts of the play, is the discovery of a new rationale, an honorable moral basis, for doing so. His frustration comes to a climax in the last soliloquy, “How all occasions do inform against me,” after which both Hamlet and his creator find themselves at an impasse. Shakespeare has borrowed the basic plot of a revenge play, but his emphasis on inner conflict makes it difficult to show the hero accomplishing an obligatory revenge in the final act. The playwright solves this artistic problem, more or less satisfactorily, by making crucial revisions in his text that alter the character of his Hamlet and of his foils. The avenger of Act V is a man partly liberated from inner conflict, one who has experienced psychological growth. Had they paid particular attention to Act V, Freud and Jones might well have modified their view of a Hamlet terminally mired in unconscious conflict.3

     To correct the judgment of neurotic weakness, defended by Ernest Jones in his book-length expansion of Freud’s point about some special, inhibiting feature of the hero’s task,4 we should notice the extraordinary care that Shakespeare has taken to show that the pressure on Hamlet arises not from past trauma but from the severity of the shock he is currently sustaining as a result of the sudden change from a world of enchanted simplicity to one of tormented complexity. Why does the playwright introduce the fact that Hamlet has been studying at Wittenberg, which is no part of the borrowed story, except to suggest a clash between the son’s world as scholar and the father’s as soldier? Why give us odd, even uncomfortable glimpses of Hamlet in the days of his innocence—writing a painfully sincere letter to Ophelia, relishing at length the bombastic speech spoken by the First Player about “rugged Pyrrhus,” and tenderly holding the skull of Yorick whose lips he kissed “I know not how oft”—except to shock us with contrast? For the beloved Ophelia was, like his mother, an ally of the hero in Saxo Grammaticus and Belleforest, but in Shakespeare’s play she is loyal to her father, hence to the King. And the “rugged Pyrrhus” speech, which seemed mere rant to Dryden and Pope, has been understood by critics since Edmund Malone as deliberately old fashioned, as Shakespeare’s way of dramatizing the hold that such theatrical rhetoric, with its simplified morality, had over young Hamlet and perhaps over the playwright’s own youth as well.5 As for Yorick, Hamlet’s love for this father-figure contrasts strikingly with his stern sense of duty toward his ghostly father, who never speaks of his love for Hamlet but only of Hamlet’s obligatory love for himself. Why does Shakespeare go out of his way to give Hamlet the same name as his father (in the sources he is named Horwendil) unless it is to tighten the noose of responsibility around him? And surely for the same reason he has Claudius address Hamlet at once not as nephew but as son. Shakespeare makes much more of the adultery motif than does Belleforest, who introduced it, surely to stress the contrast between Hamlet’s idealized recollection of his parents’ marriage and the newly discovered reality, and we might add that Shakespeare, with pre-Freudian insight, knew that the combination of murdered father and sexually lawless mother would sharply increase the psychological pressure on a sensitive and idealistic young man. And then of course Claudius’s court not only harbors these dark secrets but is also a place of carousing, of crude militarism, and of such pervasive hypocrisy that no one can afford to take Polonius’s good advice about being true to oneself. Shakespeare permits his isolated hero one trusted friend (since a great talker must have someone to talk to), but Horatio understands relatively little of Hamlet’s inwardness, as we see in his superficial summary of the action, citing bloody and unnatural acts, accidental judgments, and purposes mistook.

     Only technically a revenge hero, Hamlet is most truly a “hero of consciousness,”6 the most articulate consciousness Shakespeare ever created. Three original features of the play’s language and style highlight this fact. One is the astonishing variety and intensity of Hamlet’s verbal opportunities and modes of address, the range of his irony and eloquence. No one can stand up to him verbally except, briefly, the sublimely insouciant gravedigger. Another is the play’s uniquely large and resourceful vocabulary. It contains some 600 words Shakespeare had never used before, two-thirds of which he would never use again.7 And finally there are those memorable and probing soliloquies by means of which Shakespeare carried out the representation of inwardness to an unprecedented degree. This hero of consciousness is also a tragic hero, to be sure, but he is not a tragic hero burdened as are Brutus, Othello, Lear and Macbeth by some moral weakness. It is noteworthy that in revision Shakespeare deleted from Act I Horatio’s reference to the ominous signs preceding the assassination of Julius Caesar, probably so that Hamlet, also facing a paternalistic tyrant, would not be seen to resemble Brutus. He also deleted the whole passage beginning “So oft it chanceth in particular men,” a passage given heavy emphasis by Laurence Olivier in acknowledged deference to Ernest Jones’s interpretation of the play. My guess is that he realized that this speech about tragic flaws might lead an audience into thinking mistakenly that it was intended as his own judgment on the protagonist. Hamlet’s highly articulate determination to know all and set all right, however unwise and imprudent from a self-preservationist point of view, expresses strength rather than weakness of character. We can fairly say that his character contributes to the tragic outcome of the play, that his high-mindedness ironically brings harm both to himself and to those unfortunates who compromise with corruption, but it would be misleading to infer from this a tragic flaw.8

     Since Hamlet’s soliloquies are the most obvious means by which Shakespeare so originally represents inwardness, they invite more specific comment in an attempt to resituate Freud’s oedipal Hamlet. The first and second of them introduce respectively the themes of suicide and inaction, and (after the more superficial third in which the hero whips himself into a state of high resolve) they are combined and developed in the crucial fourth soliloquy, “To be or not to be,” wherein Hamlet wrestles hardest with the nub of his conflict. “To be,” i.e. not to act, is to suffer without foreseeable end. But to act, “to take arms against a sea of troubles,/ And by opposing end them,” comes to the same thing because doing so wouldn’t end them. Action is associated with dying in Hamlet’s mind, blood revenge with self-slaughter. And death involves the fear of something after death that condemns him to continued inaction and thus to ongoing reproaches of conscience. In the later soliloquies, sparked by his observation of Claudius praying and of Fortinbras on his way to battle, Hamlet seems to have decided finally to become a ruthless avenger, overriding his scruples. This has distressed some critics, but I think they have not understood the peculiar irony of these moments, the way the very fierceness of the hero’s language expresses self-loathing, and reveals an acute moral sense in that it substitutes for vengeful action.9

     The last of the soliloquies, “How all occasions do inform against me,” often misunderstood, brilliantly dramatizes the impasse into which Shakespeare had led his hero. Hamlet seems to be holding up Fortinbras as a model, and berating himself for not emulating a young prince who is fighting for a patch of Polish ground, as indeed his own father had done. But his language is scathing. That hardly “delicate” Prince (as Hamlet ironically dubs him) is about to sacrifice twenty-thousand men for a plot of ground not worth an eggshell! And all for “a trick of fame,” a trifle of reputation, a no longer creditable code of honor. The irony is crucial in lines 53-56: “Rightly to be great/ Is not to stir without great argument,/ But greatly to find quarrel in a straw/ When honor’s at the stake.” This sounds on its face like Hamlet’s own credo, and has been so understood by most critics. Certainly Hamlet greatly respects honorable action. But the passage is a sharply ironic rendering of Fortinbras’ own crude code of honor—and by implication his own father’s as well. It speaks grandly of “great (i.e. noble) argument” only as cover for an opportunistic code all too ready to find quarrel in a worthless “straw” when chivalric honor—honor at any cost, now debased in Hamlet’s view—is at stake.10

     How at this juncture can Shakespeare prepare Hamlet for the inevitable denouement? After all, despite the hero’s extraordinarily expanded consciousness, this is still in outline a revenge play, the plot of which does not differ significantly from that in the borrowed tale. Both feature the murder of one brother by another, the remarriage of his wife to the usurper, the seeming madness of the filial avenger, a young woman sent to discover the prince’s intentions and his stabbing of her spying father, his speaking to his mother in her chamber, his being packed off to Britain accompanied by retainers whose letter from the King he intercepts and exchanges, his return and his final revenge. To Thomas Kyd’s “Spanish Tragedy” and to a lost Hamlet play known as the “Ur Hamlet” (said to have been written by Kyd, though some think it by Shakespeare), we owe additional touches, including most notably the introduction of the father’s ghost. The only significant character added by Shakespeare is Fortinbras, and this, as we have seen, contributed to the difficulty he faced in arranging for Hamlet to kill Claudius and welcome Fortinbras as a worthy successor to the throne.

     For the sake of his plot, Shakespeare made some crucial revisions, which we can study by comparing the Second Quarto of 1604, the fullest version of the play we have (the First Quarto being very corrupt), with the Folio version printed in 1623. He completely eliminated the soliloquy we have just considered, adding a few, perfunctory lines that make Fortinbras appear more responsible. He also softened Hamlet’s view of Laertes, making him look more brotherly, and deleted as well two speeches in which Hamlet speaks with something like glee about the fate of Rosencrantz and Guildenstern and with something like brutality to his mother. He added the following in a speech to Horatio: “And is’t not to be damned/ To let this canker of our nature come/ In further evil?” (5.2.68-70), lines that give some moral weight, drawn from Christianity rather than chivalry, to the idea of killing of Claudius.11 And he altered one memorable passage to imply that Hamlet, in his resignation or fatalism (for he continues to associate Claudius’s death with his own), is no longer troubled by “the fear of something after death.” Quarto 2 reads: “Since no man of aught he leaves, knows, what is’t to leave betimes, let be.” And the Folio: “Since no man has aught of what he leaves, what is’t to leave betimes?” The Folio changes the idea of not knowing what one leaves (closer to the language of Montaigne that it borrows) to “not having” it, and drops the “Let be,” yielding a more conventional or more Christian picture of the hero in his preparation for death. You may be thinking at this point that the texts you are familiar with include the eliminated soliloquy and the Quarto version of the little passage just quoted. The fact is that the texts we read are hybrids, conflated texts, because editors do not want to sacrifice memorable lines. This poses a challenge for a critic who wants to focus on the changed Hamlet of Act V because there are really in a conflated text two Hamlets jostling for position. But what comes across clearly enough even in such a text is a Hamlet who has modified the anger and bitter irony of the earlier acts and is moving in the direction of final acceptance—someone in whom melancholy and composure are mixed.

     A basic shift in Hamlet’s outlook is well prepared in both Quarto and Folio texts by the sea voyage that takes place off stage and is reported to Horatio. There is an important difference, after all, between the unpremeditated stabbing of the spying Polonius on the one hand and the cunning counterplot against Rosencrantz and Guildenstern on the other. The latter action involves anticipation of the King’s purpose, clever exchange of letters requiring skill in forgery and resourceful possession of his father’s seal, bold boarding of a pirate ship and artful bargaining with the pirates for a safe return to Denmark. (In the old tale, interestingly, the father was a pirate.) The whole recounted episode becomes symbolically suggestive when, in consequence, we see Hamlet assert in his first exchange with the King in Act V, “This is I, Hamlet the Dane,” signaling to one and all that he is no longer the son, that he is taking his father’s place. Indeed we hear no more from or about the Ghost in Act V.

     The change in the hero’s character blends an old and new Hamlet. He now finds a measure of assurance in “a divinity that shapes our ends” but not without adding, “rough hew them as we may.” He now can say, alluding to Matthew, “There is special Providence in the fall of a sparrow,” but follows this immediately with the fatalistic: “If it be now, ‘tis not to come; if it be not to come, it will be now; if it be not now, yet it will come.” He accepts with composure and even some confidence the King’s wager to duel with Laertes, then adds, speaking to Horatio, “But thou wouldst not think how ill all’s here about my heart”—the deliberately hard-to-pronounce phrase, “how ill all’s here,” beautifully drawing out his anxiety. Horatio prudently advises him not to proceed with the duel, advice that Hamlet heroically disdains with the phrase “We defy augury.” It is worth adding that Hamlet does not in fact lose the duel but is in fact fatally wounded during it, brought down not by hubris but by a residue of his old innocence, as the cunning Claudius foresaw when he told Laertes that Hamlet is free from contriving and will not peruse the foils. Another fine example of combining the old Hamlet’s reckless boldness and the new Hamlet’s composure is the exchange with Horatio during the Gravedigger’s Scene. Hamlet examines a skull and asks, “Why may not imagination trace the noble dust of Alexander till ‘a find it stopping a bunghole?” Horatio sensibly replies, “’Twere to consider too curiously [i.e. too minutely] to consider so.” But Hamlet robustly puts such caution aside, an explorer of consciousness no matter the risk. Finally I would call attention to the artfully ambiguous way that the accomplishment of his revenge against Claudius is actually presented. Yes, the Prince at last and boldly thrusts home with the poisoned sword (ignoring cries of “Treason”) and for good measure pours into Claudius the contents of the poisoned cup, but this is done only after he knows himself to be dying. We see him, in dying, briefly restored as the complete prince—courtier, scholar, soldier—whose breakdown was earlier lamented by Ophelia.

     It is a pity that Freud and Jones paid no attention to the change in Hamlet’s character, to his growth, because it dramatizes an insight of obvious importance in psychoanalytic therapy. We are shown in Act V a young man who has gained some freedom from his intensely ambivalent feelings toward the father. But he has done so at great cost, too great in this tragedy for anything like a happy ending. In Henry IV 1, written two or three years before Hamlet, a similar but less profound conflict is successfully resolved. Ernst Kris in “Prince Hal’s Conflict” points out that the ideals of chivalry are both honored in that play and satirized in the figure of Hotspur.12 Kris might have added that they are satirized even more bitingly in Falstaff’s irresistible, albeit cowardly, catechism on the subject of honor. [(Harold Goddard perceptively remarked that Hamlet unlike Hal is himself “an imaginative genius and needs no Falstaff to spur him.”13)] The chivalric ideal enjoys a last Shakespearean hurrah in Henry V, but is subject to several kinds of questioning within the play. Between Henry V and Hamlet comes Julius Caesar, in which Brutus struggles against but yields to the temptation to assassinate a perceived tyrant, adding a tragic dimension to Shakespeare’s dramatization of the son-father conflict. In the supremely complex case of Hamlet, the hero has partly resolved his conflict by replacing his father, partly found a new rationale for the killing of Claudius, and partly accepted the fact that his own death is the price he must pay for doing so.

     As in other tragedies this one ends when the hero is overcome by circumstances he did not intend but to which his actions contributed. But it is different in that the hero undergoes a kind of double death, that of his princely body and that of his amazing power of speech. After being fatally wounded he speaks another twenty lines, including “Oh, I could prophesy” which seems to promise still more speech were it not for the intervention of death. His famous final utterance, “The rest is silence,” is ambiguous: it implies there is no more he wishes to say but also that the remainder of what he could and would say is stopped by death. We hate to part with him. And apparently Shakespeare did too. The play is by far the longest he ever wrote, exceeding the limits of normal theatrical presentation as the experienced playwright and theatrical businessman must have known. Perhaps he guessed that future audiences would nevertheless come under its spell.



End Notes

1 He first proposes this interpretation in an 1897 letter to Wilhelm Fliess (Collected Letters, 272) and first publishes it in The Interpretation of Dreams (Standard Edition, v. 3). Freud’s last book, unfinished at his death, An Outline of Psycho-Analysis (Standard Edition, v. 23), restates it, again linking Hamlet and Oedipus.

2 In forming my view of Hamlet’s moral conflict I have taken hints from various critics but am indebted especially to Harold C. Goddard, Peter Alexander and especially James Shapiro. According to Shapiro (258-76), Shakespeare’s audience sensed that the fall of the Earl of Essex very shortly before Hamlet was written represented in England the demise of the age of chivalry, and like Hamlet they sensed too that whatever post-chivalric conception of honor was replacing it could not clearly be named. See his A Year in the Life of William Shakespeare, pages 258-76. I found further clarification regarding the specific association of chivalry and Essex in Jonathan Bate’s recent essay, “The Mirror of Life: How Shakespeare conquered the world” (Harper’s Magazine, April 2007). Bate (44) comments on Shakespeare’s own attraction to the Earl of Essex, marked by his flattering allusion to Essex’s military expedition against the Irish in Henry V (5.28-34), written in 1599. Shakespeare’s patron Southampton was a follower of Essex and was sent to the tower after the latter’s fall whereas the playwright, “with his usual cunning,” got off with a reprimand.

3 The assumption of a delay on Hamlet’s part that demands interpretation, which governed the thinking of Freud, Ernest Jones, and of many critics before them, is much less evident when we read the Folio text alone, the text that represents Shakespeare’s revision of his play. This is so because the Folio text omits the final soliloquy beginning “How all occasions do inform against me / And spur my dull revenge!”—a speech in which Hamlet in effect admits that such a delay is for him the central question: “I do not know / Why yet I live to say, ‘This thing’s to do,’ / Since I have cause, and will, and strength, and means / To do’t.” John Jones (127-28), who has attentively studied the differences between the Quarto and Folio texts, points out that the delay question was only introduced into Shakespeare criticism after Lewis Theobald conflated the two (that is, the Second Quarto and Folio texts, the corrupt First Quarto being then unknown). Since the publication of the Oxford edition of 1986, edited by Gary Taylor and Stanley Wells, editors of Shakespeare have been making an effort to avoid conflation, though some have proved to be unable to omit so notable a speech as the “How all occasions” soliloquy. Jonathan Bate’s forthcoming edition of the Folio text alone), announced and discussed by him in “Commentary: The Folio Restored” 11-13), is in my view a less satisfactory solution that the one adopted by The Norton Shakespeare (edited by Greenblatt, et. al.) based on the Oxford edition, which prints both texts together but clearly indicates by typeface, spacing, etc., which words have been subtracted and added in the Folio as against the Q2 text.

4 Hamlet exemplified for Ernest Jones “intellectual cowardice, that reluctance to dare the exploration of his inmost soul” (113). But a bold, unstinting effort to understand himself and his world is precisely what has fascinated most critics about Hamlet. It is little wonder that Jones could not discover in this tragic hero any evidence of moral and emotional growth.

5 One can hardly fail to guess at a personal interest in the fact that Shakespeare devotes almost a fifth of his “revenge play” to Hamlet’s fascination with the players and with matters theatrical. Critics who want to pursue their hunch that Hamlet is the most personal of his creations might dwell on this rather than on the fact that his son was named Hamnet and died in 1596. Alexander (220) surmises that, rather than naming his famous hero after his dead son, Shakespeare named his son after the hero of the lost Hamlet play popular around 1590.

6 I take the phrase “hero of consciousness” from Harold Bloom, who expands on it in Chapter Twenty-Four of Hamlet: Poem Unlimited.

7 I draw this fact from Shapiro (286-87). He mentions also that the play contains 179 expressions coined by Shakespeare or employed by him in new ways, and a record 67 instances of hendiadys (two nearly synonymous nouns joined by “and”), a device that has the effect of destabilizing the meaning of each single noun.

8 Peter Alexander and Meredith Skura explain well why the concept of “tragic flaw” (derived from Aristotle’s hamartia) confuses our understanding of this particular tragic hero. Alexander asserts out that the clashing of Hamlet’s heroic will with the prudential will of others in the play, however tragic in its results, does not point to a defect in his character. For Skura, it is Hamlet’s world rather than his character that’s flawed. She writes (41): “To blame Hamlet’s tragic flaw for his fate is to leave our sense of his world undisturbed; it allows us to overlook the painful contradictions in a flawed world, which is the only world we have, and to locate them in one easily identified part of one character’s mind. In an even more reductive way, it hides the paradox that Hamlet’s greatness is inseparable from his flaw.”

9 In the Prayer Scene, Shakespeare altered a phrase (“Now might I do it, but” became “Now might I do it pat [neatly]”) that in effect changes a hesitant Hamlet into one who welcomes a more bloodthirsty vengeance. A reader puzzled by this might stop to consider that Laertes’ unequivocal preference for bloodthirsty revenge is contrasted to the complexity of Hamlet’s view. Psychoanalytic critics who remain in thrall to the idea that Hamlet unequivocally endorses bloodthirsty revenge see his backing off from the resolve to execute such a revenge in the Prayer Scene as rationalization. But I think Shakespeare meant Hamlet’s harsh resolve to be understood as a kind of self-disgust and thus as a kind of moral strength. Perhaps this instance of irony is a bit elusive for audiences, but leads into the more incisive irony of the last soliloquy, to which I now turn.

10 This crucial irony has eluded most critics, including John Jones whose fine attention to Shakespeare’s revisions and the way they alter the play’s implications might have prompted him to see how the soliloquy led the playwright into an impasse and (as I attempt to show in the following paragraphs of my text) how its cancellation led him out of it. Jones writes (85): “I agree with those who maintain it [the “Rightly to be great…” passage] can only be rescued from saying the opposite of what Shakespeare means by adding a second ‘not’.”

11 Seizing on lines added in the Folio—“And is’t not to be damned / To let this canker of our nature come / In further evil” [5.2.68-70]—Shapiro reasons that Hamlet now sees his intent to kill Claudius in terms of “salvation.” But I think the word “salvation” is a bit strong both as a synonym for “not…damned” and as a summary description of Hamlet’s altered state of mind through Act V.

12 Ernst Kris, “Prince Hal’s Conflict,” 273-88.

13 Goddard, 340.

Works Cited


Alexander, Peter. Hamlet: Father and Son. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1955.

Bate, Jonathan. “Commentary: The Folio Restored.” Times Literary Supplement. April 20, 2007.

____, “The Mirror of Life: How Shakespeare Conquered the World.” Harper’s Magazine. April 2007.

Bloom, Harold. Hamlet: Poem Unlimited. New York: Penguin, 2003.

Freud, Sigmund. The Collected Letters of Sigmund Freud and Wilhelm Fliess 1887-1904. Translated and edited by Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1985.

____. Standard Edition of the Complete Psychological Works. Translated by James Strachey. London: Hogarth Press, 1957-1974.

Goddard, Harold C. The Meaning of Shakespeare. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1951.

Greenblatt, Stephen and Walter Cohen, Jean E. Howard, Katharine Eisaman Maus, eds. The Norton Shakespeare, Based on the Oxford Edition. New York; W. W. Norton & Company, 1997.

Jones, Ernest. Hamlet and Oedipus. Garden City: Doubleday Anchor, 1954.

Jones, John. Shakespeare at Work. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1995.

Kris, Ernst. “Prince Hal’s Conflict” In Psychoanalytic Explorations in Art. New York: Schoken Books, 1952.

Shapiro, James. A Year in the Life of William Shakespeare: 1599. New York and London: HarperCollins, 2005.

Skura, Meredith. The Literary Use of the Psychoanalytic Process. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1981.

To cite this article, use this bibliographical entry: David J. Gordon "Resituating Freud’s Hamlet". PSYART: A Hyperlink Journal for the Psychological Study of the Arts. December 15, 2009. Available December 4, 2007 [or whatever date you accessed the article].
Received: January 1, 2007, Published: December 4, 2007. Copyright © 2007 David J. Gordon