Women: the weaker of the sexes...
Is this really true? Because the last time I checked, there have been a lot of women in history. For example, Rosa Parks - fought for racial equality, Susan B. Anthony - abolitionist and contributed to womens' sufferage, Clara Barton - the "Angel of the Battlefield," Harriet Tubman - helped free hundreds of slaves, and many more. Each had a passion to improve society.
In Hamlet, Shakespeare presents Ophelia and Queen Gertude as passive and submissive women. Perhaps instead of putting the blame on these women, Shakespeare is exposing the flaws of men. In the past, because of pride, women were usually at fault even if they had nothing to do with the issue. In domestic violence (more commonly known as abusive relationships), men usually blame the woman for making him beat her. For example, from the Tyra Banks show (I know its a controversial issue, but it's the only one I could think of at the moment), the boyfriend responds to the confrontation by saying, "She makes it escilate... Why did you make me angry?... Why did you make me do this to you?" To watch the episode in its full context click: (Skip to 5mins for the male response) (here).
I'm not trying to say women are better than men or men are better than women. Men are better at somethings, while women are better at other things. Unfortunately women are often discredited because of stereotypes and whatnot. What does this have to do with Hamlet? These women were used in the schemes of men. As society would have it, naturally women are supposed to submit to their husbands, whether their submission is meant for good or evil.