Department

English: Literature and Writing

Publication Year

2001

Abstract

The argument that new literature involves old literature in its invention implies that the past is invested in the formation of the new, rather than the new merely being a conforming or diverging product of the old. Although Shakespeare's Henry IV Part 1 and Part 2 and Hamlet are by the same playwright and of the same time period, this two way relationship can be seen between the historical plot running through the former plays and the tragic plot of the latter. Prince Hal and Hamlet's comparable progression to maturation exemplify the ability of a plot to appear in different settings and genres. However, although the plays have many similarities, their different genres and the comparisons and contrasts between the language of both reveal the diversity which may be achieved from the same basic story line.

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