Othello Act 3

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Throughout act 3 scene 3 Iago’s manipulation through the power of language gradually destroys Othello’s sanity and takes control over his full mental and emotional state. He does this by using his skills an orator to create an illusion that Desdemona is ‘directly in love’ with Cassio, thus attacking his emotional vulnerability. Iago advances his attack on Othello due to his opportunistic behaviour and gradually destroys his dignity, putting him into an uncontrollable rage.

At the beginning, we see Othello’s total love for and trust in his wife. However, in scene three that we start to deal with Iago eating away at Othello’s mind and reason. Iago’s comments on Cassio’s exit from the garden when he says: “Ha!  I like not that.” From this he creates suspicion in Othello. He carefully maneuvers his words in order for Othello to become more distressed by what he has to say. “But he that filches from me my good name/ Robs me of that which not enriches him”. He suggests that Othello should be wary of being jealous, knowing full well that by nature Othello is not a jealous man: “O!  Beware, my lord, of jealousy:/ It is the green-eye’d monster, which doth mock/ The meat it feeds on:  that cuckold lives in bliss/ Who, certain of its fate, loves not his wronger”.

Iago goes on to remind Othello that she deceived her father in marrying the Moor.  Iago is pleased to see how his work on Othello is progressing, and he becomes bolder.  He suggests that Desdemona is having second thoughts about her marriage to Othello, and regrets their partnership. He also suggests that Cassio and Desdemona have been having an affair. “look to your wife, observe her well with Cassio.” From this statement, Iago suggests that he knows Venician women and Othello doesn't. Othello also views Iago as his closest and only confidante. “I am bound to thee forever.” In Othello’s soliloquy, we see the results of Iago’s poison. He opens by praising Iago’s honesty. He feels that Desdemona has been...
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