Hamlet’s Humanity

Anguish can alter even the soundest parts of one’s humanity. In the play, Hamlet by William Shakespeare, Prince Hamlet, immensely distressed from the death of his father, falls into a heartbroken state, resulting in the eventual madness in the play. Through literary devices such as tone and diction, Shakespeare creates a character that cannot be seen by the reader as fully-human.

In the first lines of the play, it is explicitly clear to the reader that the tone of Hamlet’s soliloquy is of immense anguish, so much as wishing to go against the natural order, “O that this too too solid flesh would melt, / Thaw, and resolve itself into a dew! / Or that the Everlasting had not fix’d / His canon ’gainst self-slaughter!” (1.2 132-135). By aspiring for “self-slaughter” and wishing that his “flesh would melt”, Hamlet reveals his inhuman desires to go against the natural order created by the “Everlasting”, namely, God. Only a few lines further, the tone of the soliloquy has turned from depressed to anger to Hamlet’s mother:As if increase of appetite had grown / By what it fed on: and yet, within a month,— / Let me not think on’t,—Frailty, thy name is woman!” (1.2 146-149). The image of feeding, expressed in the quote exhibits Hamlet’s inhuman thoughts of his mother’s insatiable hunger for power. Similarly, the anger, disrespect, and lack of compassion expressed towards his mother, Queen Gertrude, further shows Hamlet’s lack of humanity. By expressing Hamlet’s juxtaposing emotions of depression and anger in the same soliloquy, Shakespeare creates a tone that is not just one of anguish, but of inhuman madness that continues throughout the course of the play.

By using depressing and controversial diction in Hamlet’s soliloquy in Act 1, Shakespeare further expresses Hamlet’s inhuman disposition. This is exemplified in line 136, “How weary, stale, flat, and unprofitable / Seem to me all the uses of this world!” (1.2 136-137). By using melancholy words such as “weary” and “stale”, it becomes clear to the reader of Hamlet’s harsh view of the world. Hamlet further describes the world with revolting diction, “… things rank and gross in nature / Possess it merely.” (1.2 139-140). Hamlet’s lack of joyous words while describing his mother’s marriage show his harsh and inhuman disposition, as seen in the quote, “She married:— O, most wicked speed, to post With such dexterity to incestuous sheets!” (1.2 159-60). Diction such as “wicked” and “incestuous” continue to showcase the cold-heartedness of Hamlet’s nature.

In the play, Hamlet by William Shakespeare, Prince Hamlet, distressed from the death of his father, falls into a heartbroken state, resulting in the eventual madness in the play. Through literary devices such as tone and diction, Shakespeare creates a character that cannot be seen as fully human.

The Battle of the Bulge

The Battle of the Bulge, also known as the Ardennes Offensive, was the last significant German offensive on the Western Front during World War II. The battle occurred from December 16, 1944, to January 16, 1945, and was fought in the Ardennes, Belgium, Luxembourg, and Germany. The battle was a failed effort by the German Fuhrer, Adolf Hitler, to drive the Allies back from German home territory. The battle included many belligerents from both the Allies and the Axis, including Canada, Great Britain, Belgium, and France on the Allied side; and Germany on the Axis side. The “bulge” in the name, originates from the event when “the Germans drove deeper into the Ardennes in an attempt to secure vital bridgeheads, the Allied line took on the appearance of a large bulge”. (Robert Cowley and Geoffrey Parker). Although the result of the battle was an Allied victory, both the Allies and the Axis suffered great losses; 75,000 and 120,000 casualties, respectively. (Encyclopedia Britannica, “Battle of the Bulge”).

After the Battle of Normandy (June 6, 1944) the Allies moved across France and into Western Europe, particularly to Belgium. Despite the success in Normandy and the liberation of Paris (August 25, 1944) the Allies “lost momentum in the autumn.” (Ibid.). Although this was the case, the Allied Expeditionary Force, led by the supreme commander, General Dwight D. Eisenhower, entered German territory on September 10, 1944. By December 16, 1944, feeling pressure from the Allies closing in on German territory, German Fuhrer, Adolf Hitler, made the decision to launch an offensive in Ardennes, thus commencing the Battle of the Bulge. (World History Group, “Battle of the Bulge”).

The launch of the German offensive on December 16, 1944, was led by three German armies: the Fifth Panzer Army (led by Hasso, Freiherr von Manteuffel), Sixth Panzer Army (led by SS commander Sepp Dietrich), and the Seventh Panzer Army. This included “more than 200,000 German troops and nearly 1,000 tanks”. (U.S. Army Center of Military History, “Battle of the Bulge”). The primary objective of the German offensive was to “split the Allied armies by means of a surprise blitzkrieg thrust through the Ardennes to Antwerp”. (Robert Cowley and Geoffrey Parker). As the Germans pushed through the Allied lines of defense in the Ardennes, the line began to push out, giving it the appearance of a bulge. Aided by poor weather and the Allies surprise, the Germans continued to effectively pursue the attack. Despite Allied resistance, by December 24, the German Fifth Panzer Army had captured St. Vith and “had advanced to within 4 miles (6 km) of the Meuse River.” (Encyclopedia Britannica, “Battle of the Bulge”).

Despite German advancements, harsh weather conditions and air attacks by the Allies resulted in a shortage of German resources. Furthermore, on January 9, 1945, the U.S. 3rd Army engaged in the battle, attacking German forces on the southern flank of the Ardennes bulge, resulting in a significant loss for the Germans. Throughout January, Allied troops, “attacked the sides of the shrinking bulge until they had restored the front”. (U.S. Army Center of Military History, “Battle of the Bulge”). By January 16, 1945, as a result of a combined continued effort from Allied forces, the Battle of the Bulge was officially considered over, resulting in an allied victory. Although the battle was declared finished, it was only “by early February, the front lines had returned to their positions on December 16.” (World History Group, “Battle of the Bulge”).

The Battle of the Bulge was “the largest battle fought on the Western Front in Europe during World War II” (World History Group, “Battle of the Bulge”) and resulted in significant losses on both sides of the battle. Apart from fuel and resources, the Allies suffered 75,000 casualties, and the Germans lost an irreplaceable 120,000 casualties (Encyclopedia Britannica, “Battle of the Bulge”). In spite of the Allied victory the Battle of the Bulge, in some ways, was successful for the Germans as well. The surprise attack on December 16, 1944, and the geographical location of the Ardennes led to significant casualties, loss of valuable time, and resources for the Allies. As a whole, however, the Battle of the Bulge was an Allied victory. The results of battle gave the Allies a significant advantage over the Germans and helped the Allies to eventually win the Second World War.  


Works Cited

Battle of the Bulge, edited by Robert Cowley and Geoffrey Parker, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company, 1996. Accessed 24 Jan. 2018.

The Editors of Encyclopædia Britannica. Battle of the Bulge, Encyclopædia Britannica, 8 Dec. 2017. Accessed 23 Jan. 2018.

Battle of the Bulge, World History Group, 2017. Accessed 24 Jan. 2018.

The Battle of the Bulge, U.S. Army Center of Military History. Accessed 22 Jan. 2018.

Rejection and Societal Oppression of Females in Medea’s Society

“There should be no female sex. With that, men would be rid of all their troubles.” (Euripides, Medea, 633-634). With these words, it is clear that there is no room for females in Medea’s society. This theme is explored through … Continue reading

After School

As the last bell for class rang, Mara jumped out of seat eager to get out of the red brick walls that inclosed her six hours a day. She sighed as she grabbed her books and thought about what she was going to after she got out and-

“Can you move, please?”

Mara looked up from where she was standing and found herself looking into the eyes of one of her male classmates. He smirked and shook his head, messing his already disorganized short brown hair. Realizing she was blocking the doorway to get out of the classroom, she quickly mumbled an apology to the growing line of annoyed teenagers that was behind her. She ran out of the doorway, and felt the adrenaline running through her body.

Today was the day, that day that everything would change. She looked behind herself and met the cool, outside air and let the damp mist surrounded her.

She was always lost in her thoughts, but now she could finally get started on what she had been working on for the last three months. It could change the world forever. She quickly made sure she was out of sight, and then ran to the overflowing garbage bins that sat outside the brick walls of the school. She found what she was looking for, the old box of discarded Home Science Tools. Little did people know that what was inside those boxes would change everything.

She hastily grabbed the box, careful to not break anything, and sprinted across the dead, frosty, grass field towards the rusty red bridge that crossed over the deep, river that to lead to her house. She ran harder, running across the bridge, each breath she exhaled releasing a little cloud of air in front of her.

The sun was starting to set, and just as she was rounding the last corner to her house, she felt a hand behind her, pushing hard. No, she thought, He can’t be here, not now! But before she could regain her footing, she slipped off and crashed in the ice cold river, sinking to the bottom.

Hailey’s Oil-Free Vegan Apple Pie Muffins

Lately I have been exploring and creating new recipes in the world of vegan cooking. Not only are vegan recipes healthier, they are also suitable for people with allergies, as all vegan recipes are dairy free and most are gluten free, nut free, and refined sugar free. Now I know what you’re thinking, vegan? How will they taste good? Don’t I need really expensive and/or strange ingredients to make vegan food? How will they be moist without oil? Thankfully, this recipe only contains ingredients that you have in your kitchen already, they are unbelievably moist because of the warm apple mixture that is in the recipe, and I can assure you they are utterly delicious. If you don’t have some of the ingredients in this recipe, you can easily replace them with “ordinary” ingredients. (Ex. A flax egg can be exchanged for a real egg) I hope you enjoy this recipe I made a try!

Oil-Free Apple Pie Muffins

Dry Ingredients

  • 2 cups whole wheat oat flour (if you don’t want to buy the flour, you can also grind up 2 cups of whole wheat large flake oats in a food processor until they become a flour-like consistency)
  • 3 tbsp + 2 tsp raw unrefined sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • Pinch of nutmeg
  • Handful of chopped walnuts (optional)

Wet Ingredients

  • 1 flax egg (1 tbsp ground flax + 3 tbsp water)
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2/4 cups almond milk
  • 1 medium mashed banana

Apple Pie Mixture

  • 2 peeled granny smith apples (1 grated + 1 chopped)
  • 1/4 pure maple syrup (honey or maple agave is good too!)
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice


  • Preheat oven to 350 f
  • Mix flax egg together in a small bowl and set aside
  • In a small pot, mix the apples, maple syrup, lemon juice, and stir mixture and let it simmer on medium/low heat for 5-10min
  • In a large bowl, mash the banana and put all the rest of the wet ingredients (including the now-gelled flax seed) together and mix very well
  • In a smaller bowl mix all the dry ingredients thoroughly then combine the dry ingredients with the wet (after the apple mixture has called for at least five min), mixing well until there are no more lumps, besides the apple lumps
  • Chop up your walnuts and then add to the mixture and stir again
  • Bake for 21 min then let cool for 5-10 min

(This photo is not mine, but I swear the muffins in this recipe look the same, if not better! :D)

The Little Tree (A Christmas Story)

It is Christmas eve, and everyone is excited, including the tiny Christmas tree that sits in the center of a family’s living room. Although the tree is small, he is the center of of attention as he shines brightly with all the lights and dazzling ornaments that he dons. The little tree never expected it’s Christmas to turn out this way, in fact, he can still remember that just this morning he was expecting to be left with all the other unwanted Christmas trees…

On the morning of the twenty fourth, just a day before Christmas morning, a little tree awaits nervously in the Christmas tree farm that he lives in, as there is much excitement throughout the whole farm.

“Is it true people take us into their homes this time of year?” The little tree asks the tall, grand trees beside him excitedly. “And do they really decorate us with flashy ornaments?”

The trees laugh and look down to him. “Relax, shorty,” One says, still laughing, “Such a fate is not for the likes of you!”

“Yeah,” says the other big tree, “You still have a heap of growing to do!”

The trees stop talking and laughing when they hear a group of voices and footsteps walking towards them. One of the big trees looks at the approaching family with joy.

“Look sharp, guys!” He says. “Here comes a group of potential tree buyers!”

Maybe if I spread my branches I can look bigger than I really am, the little tree thinks as the family stops and looks at them.

“Look at this beauty!” The father says, looking up towards the biggest tree of the group of three trees. “This is the one for us!”

The little tree sighs and looks down at the ground. I should’ve known I wouldn’t be picked, he thinks. I will never be picked.

“See you guys! Best of luck,” says the big tree as he gets carried away.

“And don’t sweat it, shorty,” the big tree says to the little tree. “I’m sure you’ll get picked… someday!”

The big trees laugh, and the little tree closes his eyes as a tear rolls down his branches and lands in the snow below him.

“It’s a shame that a tree like that has to be thrown away in a couple of weeks.” A little boy from the family says.

“Maybe we can convert it into toothpicks,” The older girl says as she wraps a hand around his shoulders.

“I’m serious!” The little boy says. “Why don’t we be eco-friendly and get a tree that’ll continue to live? Like this one!”

The little tree gasped.

Could it be? Are they talking about me? He turned his gaze towards the voices and saw that the boy was pointing to him. “What,” the girl says back. “This puny thing? No way dad will want that thing in the living room. He wants something big to grab all the attention from our party guests on Christmas Eve!”

The little boy sighs. “But-”

“Come on, we have to go back to car to get everything ready for tonight!”

“Alright,” The boy sighs and follows his sister back to the car, leaving the little tree sadder and lonelier than ever.

Time passes, and when the last big tree gets taken, the little tree’s heart plummets into the snow.

I will be here forever, he thinks. No one will ever pick me. I will always be here, always being the last picked tree.

Meanwhile, the family is setting up their house for their big Christmas party.

“Look at this tree! Isn’t it the biggest you’ve ever seen?” Says the father as he puts on the last decoration. “Yes, it looks amazing Dad!” Says the sister.

“Oh, yes dear, it does look lovely doesn’t it? Noah, what do you think of the tree?”

Asks the mother to the little boy. The little boy, Noah, shrugs and sighs.

“I just think it is a waste of the environment to buy a big tree and then dispose of it just a few days later! I wish we had that other small tree that could continue to grow!”

“What little tree?” Asks the mother, confused. The sister groans. “Not this again.”

“Hey! There is nothing wrong with being environmentally friendly, Katie!” Says the mother to the sister. “Where is this tree of yours?”

The little boy smiles with glee. Soon after, the little tree took the place of the big tree in the centre of the living room, donned with flashy ornaments and a big star. The guests of the party fawn over the little tree, saying that it is so cute, and how amazing it is that it’ll stay alive for many Christmases to come! The little tree beams and the little boy is humbled and joyful.

“Right after christmas we tend to discard our christmas trees and our christmas spirit. But this time I think we’re going to hold onto our christmas spirit just like we’re holding onto this tree!” Says the little boy and everyone laughs and cheers.

It is a Christmas no one, especially the little tree, will ever forget.