Main Article Content
In Stoppard’s play Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead the Renaissance spirit of Hamlet is substituted by the postmodern spirit. The world view reflected in the play clearly suggests that, for postmodernism, there is no objective truth. Instead, the postmodern world offers a virtual reality. Such a world completely rejects Hamlet’s high humanistic values. There is no place for Hamlet in the postmodern world, because Shakespeare’s minor characters, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern have become protagonists. This is a typical postmodern manoeuvre reflecting an equal attitude towards high and low values. Postmodernism has no sense of what is high and what is low. Hamlet and Rosencrantz/Guildenstern are on the same level, since hierarchy no longer exists. Everything is levelled, everything is made equal. As a result, there is no sense of man’s spiritual decadence, because postmodernism cannot understand what it means to fall spiritually. Since postmodern man is deaf to Prince Hamlet’s moral words, the speech is given to such nonentities as Rosencrantz and Guildenstern. Hamlet’s high humanistic ideals are as dead in the postmodern world as Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are dead. The truth – and justice-seeking Hamlet is no longer needed, as truth and justice have no objective existence according to postmodern view. They are only artificial and conventional creations, subject to change at any time and place. In such an attitudinal environment, people, like Rosencrantz and Guildenstern, become puppets of external forces.