‘For by the Image of My Cause, I See / The Portraiture of His’: Hamlet and the Imitation of Emotion

  • Richard MeekEmail author
Part of the Palgrave Shakespeare Studies book series (PASHST)


This chapter explores the ways in which Hamlet is part of a larger textual network of mimetic models, and how the play recalls other texts that are concerned with representing emotion. It examines various works from the period that use pictorial metaphors to express sympathetic correspondence, or the relationship between the self and the other. Such texts—including Kyd’s The Spanish Tragedy, Shakespeare’s The Rape of Lucrece and Marston’s Antonio’s Revenge—acknowledge the ways in which emotional correspondence can involve emulation as well as imitation. The chapter argues that the emotional competition between the characters within these texts resembles the aesthetic rivalry between the authors of these texts. In this way, the period’s fascination with emotional imitation is enacted on a textual or intertextual level.


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© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of HullHullUK

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