Othello's Tragic Flaw

Topics: William Shakespeare, Othello, Tragic hero Pages: 3 (1040 words) Published: May 1, 2013
Othello’s Tragic Flaw
For every Shakespearean tragedy there is a grossly unfortunate sequence of events that eventually leads to a bloodbath. The reason for this bloodbath is the tragic flaw. The tragic flaw is the small character defect in the protagonist that, in most circumstances, wouldn’t have been a big problem if not for said events. People frequently mistake Othello’s tragic flaw. They jump to the seemingly obvious choice of jealousy or naivety. The actually tragic flaw will be revealed in this essay.

One of the first things that people say, and I myself said, when they are asked about Othello’s tragic flaw is something regarding how much he trusted Iago. It is an understandable thought at first because without that level of trust, Iago’s plot would not have likely succeeded. The reasons why this argument is wrong are simple though. The first reason is that everyone, not just Othello, trusted Iago. People literally called him, “Honest Iago.” This widespread level of trust proves that Othello was not naïve for trusting Iago. Moreover, Othello and Iago had been to war together. This would have required them to frequently trust one another with their lives and, in almost any other situation, would have built a massive bond of trust. Most people would have needed to be maligned more grievously than not getting a promotion to sever themselves from such a deep bond. The rational person, feeling betrayed, would normally voice his objection to his treatment and then have a chance to hear the reasoning. If he were satisfied with the explanation he would stay and forget about the problem. If he weren’t satisfied he would leave. Iago had various reasons why he felt he deserved the promotion over Cassio but never voiced his concerns. In Iago’s troubled mind, the fair retaliation would be to ruin Othello’s life. Such reasoning should leave the reader without a doubt that Iago is a sociopath. In conclusion, Iago was considered extremely...
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