1. I agree with Benjamin here that the past does hold us back from full freedom in current time and in the future. To me his line of thinking reminds of the idea that history often repeats itself. If you don’t address what has happened in the past and take proper precautions, you run the risk of horrible things happening again. Addressing and accounting for the horrible things that have happened in recent time and further back in time will show that a moment in history is terrible and will not be repeated. This topic is important to the United States especially because it is a country built on the back of slavery and we will always have that in our history. This would also appeal to the collective vision of utopia by moving people into the future as a collective that has learned from the past. Our past will always weigh upon us and to move on you must confront it, so I think Benjamin is correct with his idea here.
2. I do not feel that Hamlet finds a resolution to the conflict of individual freedom to the collective demands of the clan. While Hamlet is doing what he is thinking as the right thing, getting revenge for his father, it comes at the cost of the entire collective of the clan. He puts his individual freedom, to enact revenge and kill Claudius, above the needs of the clan, which was to continue his studies and do what he is commanded of him. I feel that Shakespeare is trying to show how there is a conflict or contradiction between the freedom of the individual under a system like feudalism by making Hamlet a character with strong individual freedom and putting him in a situation where his individual actions will destroy the clan and having it all fall apart.
3. One instance of the freedom of individual vs collective in 2312 is the chapter that starts on 320 “Wahram on Earth”, where they work on their plan to fix the Earth and how they are being slowed down by “very powerful forces on Earth” and how on Earth “it was a system so bad that everyone lived in fear, either of starvation or the guillotine, still they clutched on to it harder than ever” (322). The collective on Earth fears making any individual change because the corporations and governments in power have all the power and they will kill those who would go against them. This stops any official change from happening and it goes against the freedom of the people on Earth, but Wahram and Swan still go through with improving the Earth and they make sacrifices to do this.