Hamlet's Perfection

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In this lively study, Kerrigan celebrates both Hamlet's perfection, the character's creation of new ideals out of an inheritance of disillusionment, and Hamlet's perfection, the play's brilliance as Shakespeare's greatest tragedy. Kerrigan's approach reflects his interests in literary formalism, historical scholarship, intellectual history, and psychoanalysis. In an overview of the history of Hamlet criticism, Kerrigan argues that recent critics have done little or nothing to elucidate the play, and he suggests ways in which the abandoned tradition of Hamlet commentary might still inspire fruitful approaches to the play.