Hamlet: Origin Displaced

Rosy Colombo


This article focuses upon the category of ‘origin’ from a theoretical viewpoint, which, besides

including philological/textual aspects, inevitably opens up the issue of interpretation, not limited

to ‘capturing’ an authorial, foundational meaning. In the wake of Continental philosophical

thought and in particular Derrida and Lacan, I argue that origin can never be recovered in conventional

terms, but is rather displaced in space and time, in the materiality of subsequent edited

texts: much in the same way as, for Freud, telling a dream is already an experience of displacement,

in which what remains of the dream are significant traces. A case in point are the

multiple versions of Hamlet, approached as a palimpsest to illustrate my argument, dealing in

particular with important editorial choices in classic editions of the past two decades.


Hamlet; origin; hermeneutics; displacement; textual history; authorship

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.13136/sjtds.v4i1.156


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