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Hamlet: Insane or calculated killer? March 18, 2007

Posted by grhomeboy in Entertainment.

A mock trial in Washington looked at the actions of the title character in William Shakespeare’s “Hamlet,” but ended in deadlock.

While the prosecution at the Kennedy Center legal exercise attempted to paint the melancholy prince as a calculated killer who knowingly committed vicious crimes, The Washington Post said, the defense tried to show him as a lunatic. Supreme Court Justice Anthony M. Kennedy presided.

But in the end, the mock trial regarding Hamlet’s murder of Polonius ended deadlocked with six jurors on each side. Entitled “The Trial of Hamlet” the exercise was organized by Kennedy and the Shakespeare Theatre Company.

The Post said that while the 2 1/2-hour event was concluded without a decisive decision, one expert witness for the prosecution explained that Shakespeare’s tragedy was indicative of something far greater than law.

“It’s suffering, as in the human condition,” Harvard University professor Alan Stone said. “He doesn’t want us to see a madman. He wants us to see ourselves, in the mirror held up to nature.”

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