It has always been evident that Othello believes that Desdemona is completely faithful; however now that Iago has played with his imagination, Othello has lost his peace of mind. It is simply unimaginable and is essentially “torture” for him. Therefore, his initial reaction was severe and unforgiving, suggesting that Iago prepare for “damnation greater than that.” The diction “damnation” refers to the everlasting punishment that this act would have on Othello. The use of the diction “that” is vague and shows that there is nothing worse for Othello in the world than accusing Desdemona of infidelity. “That” is simple and understated; however very meaningful and significant. Othello suggests to Iago to “make heaven weep” and then “all earth will be amazed” for the slander against Desdemona and the torture that he will endure. Heaven is considered a peaceful and innocent place, and the crimes Iago has committed will upset the calmness. The personification of “earth amazed” refers to the paralyzing horror that the rest of the world with sustain. These are some of the worries and thoughts that Othello is experiencing.
Contrasting to the atmosphere in the first section of the excerpt, Iago is defensive, dramatic and plays the victim, creating a more sympathetic and ironic mood. Iago, known to the audience as a deceiving and manipulating character, questions whether Othello is a man or has a “soul or sense.” This is essentially an attempt to make Othello feel in some way guilty for this situation by asking whether he is a rational human being and has a sense about anything. Iago takes advantage of this situation and thanks him “for this profit.” The diction “profit” refers to a valuable lesson that Othello supposedly has now taught Iago. He takes it to an extreme stating that “to be direct and honest is not safe” and instead he will not try and help a friend by speaking the truth again. As well, the use of “O world”, “O heaven” and 3 others supports the idea that...
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