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They then often move on to a critical discussion of the book's strengths and weaknesses.
In Act 3, Scene 4, he goes as far as to suggest that Gertrude shared responsibility in the murder of Hamlet's father (29-30).
By condemning women for actions they did not commit, Hamlet is doing just what he accuses Guildenstern of doing to him: he is plucking out the "heart" of their "mystery" (3.2.372-74).
Gertrude exclaims, "O, what a rash and bloody deed is this!
" (28), and her words mark the turning point in Hamlet's moral decline.
It is doubtful that Gertrude even knows Claudius killed her previous husband.
Hamlet goes on to ask Gertrude to compare the image of the two kings, old Hamlet and Claudius.
The logic is plain: if Hamlet's mother made a cuckold out of Hamlet's father, then all women are capable of doing the same and therefore share the blame.
The fact that Gertrude's hasty remarriage does not actually constitute adultery only underscores Hamlet's tendency to find in women faults that do not exist.
Now Hamlet has blood on his hands, and the blood of the wrong person.
But rather than engage in self-criticism, Hamlet immediately turns his mother's words against her: "A bloody deed -- almost as bad, good Mother, as kill a king, and marry with his brother" (29-30).