Essay On The Character And Actions Of Othello

  • 1

    How is Othello's race a factor in the play?

    Othello ascends to the rank of the Venetian military, a city - much like Elizabethan England when the play was written - rife with racism. A general in the army, Othello holds a distinguished place in the Duke's court due to his victories in battle, but not an equal one. He suffers barbs and preconceived notions, yet Othello is esteemed and wins the love of the daughter of a nobleman. However, Brabantio is enraged by Othello's marriage to Desdemona and claims Othello used magic to compel her to run to his "sooty bosom". Race is a factor in the tragedy both in those who seek to destroy Othello, and the victims of the schemes - Othello and Desdemona. Perhaps the most pernicious form of race as an instrument of division is Othello's own view of himself as an outsider, which makes him more susceptible to Iago's plan.

  • 2

    How does Shakespeare's use of language reveal character?

    Often Shakespeare uses verse lines written in iambic pentameter to illustrate nobility. It is illustrative of Iago's duplicitous nature that he tends to speak in verse when he is with Othello and in prose for his soliloquies. One way in which Iago is a master in manipulation is his tendency to use Othello's own words to disguise his active role of instigator and make it seem that any dark thought came not from him but Othello's own mind. Othello's speech is very sophisticated at the beginning of the play, and in his soliloquy at the close of Act V, but when he is consumed with jealous rage, his eloquence falters. Shakespeare uses dialogue to convey the innerworkings of his characters.

  • 3

    Othello is often called a tragic hero. Discuss his heroic qualities as well as his flaws which lead to his demise.

    At the beginning of the play Othello is presented as an honorable man of noble stature and high position. In the end it is his misguided attempt to maintain that honor which brings about his, and Desdemona's, demise. However, Othello is not simply the victim of a plot. Iago is able to engineer Othello's downfall in part because of Othello's own insecurities. His pride blinds him to his weaknesses, and he puts his faith in Iago over the word of his love, Desdemona. Othello is obsessed with his reputation, and ends up killing his wife to save face. Only to a flawed man would murder seem like a solution to a problem of reputation. Othello is spurred on by lies and misrepresentations, but he brings about his own undoing.

  • 4

    What motives, stated and implied does Iago have for taking revenge on Othello?

    Iago's stated reason for taking revenge on Othello is that he has been passed over for Cassio's post. But is this enough for him to "hate the Moor"? It is clear that he is jealous of Othello's ascension in the court and successful wooing of Desdemona. Othello's race and status as an outsider also seems to fuel this rage, as well as the rumor that Othello has slept with Iago's wife, Emilia. None of these motivations, however, seem to add up to inspire the violence that unfolds. Iago remains one of the most purely evil of Shakespeare's villains.

  • 5

    Discuss how loyalty is presented as a positive and a negative quality throughout the play.

    Othello's lack of loyalty is what incites Iago's plan for revenge. Iago's ability to fool Othello that he is loyal while secretly plotting his demise is what makes his revenge effective. It is Othello's belief in Desdemona's lack of loyalty that seals their fates. In these ways loyalty, when misconstrued, can be dangerous. However Desdemona's loyalty to Othello even in her death and Othello's loyalty to her once his mistake is revealed are seen as ennobling aspects of their characters.

  • 6

    Compare and contrast the jealousy of Othello to that of Iago.

    One major theme in Othello is revenge - Iago's revenge on Othello and Othello's revenge on Desdemona. They both believe death will bring justice. Iago's revenge is cooler, plotted out over time where Othello's is an act of heartbroken passion. Iago wears his lack of morals as a badge of honor where it is Othello's moral code that leads to his tragic end.

  • 7

    Although Othello is the title character in what way is Iago the main character?

    Often in Shakespeare's plays such as Hamlet or King Lear, the title character is the main character and protagonist. In Othello this is not the case. Iago has almost 20% more lines than Othello, and has more asides with the audience. While it is Othello's decisions and actions that provide the dramatic structure for the play, it is Iago who sets in motion those decisions and spurs him to action. Othello is the tragic figure of the play, along with Desdemona, and it his characteristics that lend itself to most of the themes - jealousy, race, trust. However, Iago is the character who drives the plot.

  • 8

    How does Desdemona's dying assertion that she killed herself effect how you see her character?

    From a modern feminist viewpoint Desdemona may be judged harshly for answering Emilia, when she asked who has mortally attacked her, "nobody; I myself. Farewell." Furthermore, she seemed resigned to her fate at the hands of her husband. While contemporary audiences may interpret these actions as unfathomable, they highlight the goodness of her character. Desdemona is described by others in the play with words that symbolize goodness - light, white, fair, delicate, alabaster. By the end of the play, Desdemona begins to symbolize goodness itself, so her reaction to her murder becomes another element in Othello's tragic end. Desdemona still loves Othello, though he is mistaken, and she goes to her death professing her husband's reputation. A modern audience may wish for a response that is less melodramatic, but that is not the world that Shakespeare has created in this play.

  • 9

    In what ways do Othello's suicide strengthen or undermine his heroism?

    Though suicide is not usually the chosen end for a heroic figure, it is Othello's only escape from the crimes he has committed. Though the victim of Iago's trickery, Othello is still the author of his own demise. For Desdemona's death to be answered by anything less than his own would have felt false.

  • 10

    Describe how Othello's pride leads to his fall.

    At the beginning of the play Othello is proud of himself and his achievements, but when Iago looks to punish Othello for his perceived slight, it is his pride that he preys upon. The belief that Desdemona has tainted his honor ignites Othello's rage, but it is his pride that blinds him to the fact that the evidence of her acts are lies invented not by a loyal friend but an enemy bent on his destruction.

  • Othello Essay

    It is believed that people in love are mainly controlled by heart and their emotion, rather than the reason. The overwhelming feeling of bliss is one of significant obstacles that blinds people. The main character Othello is another victim created by Shakespeare, that reveals suffering through his unconditional love turned into uncontrolled jealousy. Can Othello's love withstand the corrosive power of jealousy? In this passionate tragedy, Shakespeare vividly illustrates the destructive nature of vengeance, when Othello's genuine love for his Desdemona is turned against himself by Iago's propaganda. It is not only Iago who destroys Othello's marriage; it is Othello's blind jealousy that does the final cut. The play shows that although one can truly love a person and be blinded by that love, the need for control can destroy any relationship causing heartbreak and disaster. Love is a divine thing but without reason it can be dangerous.

    It is believed that people in love are mainly controlled by heart and their emotion, rather than the reason. The overwhelming feeling of bliss is one of significant obstacles that blinds people. The main character Othello is another victim created by Shakespeare, that reveals suffering through his unconditional love turned into uncontrolled jealousy. Can Othello's love withstand the corrosive power of jealousy? In this passionate tragedy, Shakespeare vividly illustrates the destructive nature of vengeance, when Othello's genuine love for his Desdemona is turned against himself by Iago's propaganda. It is not only Iago who destroys Othello's marriage; it is Othello's blind jealousy that does the final cut. The play shows that although one can truly love a person and be blinded by that love, the need for control can...

    Loading: Checking Spelling

    0%

    Read more

    Othello Essay

    644 words - 3 pages In the tragedy Othello, by William Shakespeare, Othello was misled by his envious betrayer Iago to believe his wife was dishonest and...

    Othello Essay

    1414 words - 6 pages If one reads Shakespeare's Othello, they can come to the conclusion that it might be one of the his most tragic plays ever written by Shakespeare. Romeo and Juliet, is probably the most famous of his tragic plays, but Othello, has characteristics that, I think make it even more tragic then his other plays, and therefore for that reason, you can say that...

    Othello

    585 words - 2 pages 2Pedro1PedroVictoria PedroMr. CammarataENG 3C1Thursday, December 12, 2013The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly TruthGood turns to evil by twisted words and bad people often get away with evil, until the ugly truth is reveled. In the book Othello by William Shakespeare, the protagonist, Othello, is a good man, but lost and found his way.Othello is a good husband, worker...

    Othello - 1020 words

    1020 words - 4 pages Page 1 of 5 The most interesting and despised character in William Shakespeare?s tragic play Othello, is

    Othello - 1526 words

    1526 words - 6 pages Introduction In Venice, Othello and Desdemona secretly get married. Iago says that he “does hate the moor” and plans to get revenge because he wasn’t promoted to Lieutenant. Iago and Roderigo wake Desdemona’s father, Brabantio, to tell him that a “black ram is tupping his white ewe.” Brabantio confronts Othello, who explains that he and Desdemona love each other, Brabantio warns that if she can betray her own father, she will betray Othello....

    Othello

    1429 words - 6 pages Othello Othello is a distinct and extremely debated tragic play of Shakespeare’s. Beginning even with his selection of characters, his decision to make a black man a tragic hero, at this time this was bold and original, by accent tradition blackness was associated with sin and death. Any play that preceded Othello at this time, the black character’s were generally villainous. The main characters of this tragic story are a Moor of Venice...

    Othello - 519 words

    519 words - 2 pages Othello The story Othello is a love and tragic story about Othello and his wife Desdemona. Even though he loved his wife dearly, insecurity came before his love and he let jealousy blind him. Ahead, you will read about this beautiful and sad love story, that if it wouldn't have been because of Othello...

    Othello - 1677 words

    1677 words - 7 pages Thea Simpson Dec 6, 2013Grade 10 English HonorsThe Main Characters' Views And Opinions Of OthelloA happy couple, newly married and very much in love, a young lieutenant determined to do well in his new position, and one man who is jealous enough to bring them all down. Such are the central characters of Othello, by William Shakespeare. Othello, the title protagonist, is a black African...

    othello

    531 words - 2 pages jealousy In the play Othello, jealousy is shown to be very evident through the actions of the characters. Jealousy is an emotion that everyone shares, and it is ultimately responsible for the tragic ending of the play. Everyone feels jealous at certain times of their lives, and this feeling can cause people to do irrational things. This human emotion also shows people to be weak in the sense that they are never happy with what they have....

    Othello - 1226 words

    1226 words - 5 pages Othello: TragedyShakespearian tragedy involves the downfall of a great man, which would eventually lead to his destruction, moving the audience, and to make them pity him.In the course of his own destruction Othello must come to understand his own nature in a way that he did not beforehand. Othello confronts extreme loss,...

    Othello - 1019 words

    1019 words - 4 pages "Othello" is a good example of Aristotelian drama. It is simple play and the focus is on a very small cast of characters. It has few distractions from the main plot and concentrates on just a few themes, such a jealousy, prejudice, pride and honesty. Jealousy is the emotion that drives the action of Othello. It has the classical unities of time, place (setting is in Venice in the first act and Cyprus thereafter) and action. Othello's cast...

    0 Thoughts to “Essay On The Character And Actions Of Othello

    Leave a comment

    L'indirizzo email non verrà pubblicato. I campi obbligatori sono contrassegnati *