Othello Close Reading

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In the play, Othello, by William Shakespeare, a character named Iago, manipulates people to get what he wants. One character that is manipulated the most by Iago is Othello. The reason why is because Othello made Cassio his lieutenant and there were rumors that Othello has been sleeping around with his wife, Emilia. Iago involves Desdemona, Othello’s wife, in his plan by making it seem that Desdemona and Cassio are having a relationship. Iago convinces Othello about this relationship when Othello gets the ocular proof that he wanted. This evidence was that Cassio had the handkerchief that he had given to Desdemona as a first gift. Othello and Iago made a promise to each other that Othello will kill Desdemona and Iago will kill Cassio. Up to this point in the story Othello thought that Cassio is dead; now he will have to kill Desdemona. In Othello’s opening speech in Act 5 Scene 2, Othello feels the need to kill Desdemona but still feels doubt on whether he should do it as it is presented in his speech by literary meanings and devices.

In the opening scene of Act 5, Scene 2 Othello enters their bedroom and sits next to Desdemona. Othello says in lines 1 and 2, “It is the cause it is the cause, my soul. / Let me not name it to you, you chaste stars.” Othello is saying that Desdemona is the reason to why he feels the way he feels. He feels heart-broken and cheated on because he does not even want to repeat to her all the horrible things that she has done to him. Also, the line “you chaste stars” is referring Desdemona as a virgin light. He is saying that Desdemona is so pure that he looks up to her like the stars in the night sky. However, it is contradicting his thoughts because Othello wants Desdemona to be killed for sleeping around with Cassio.

In the following lines Othello says, “It is the cause. Yet I’ll not shed her blood, / Nor scar that whiter skin of hers than snow, / And smooth as monumental alabaster” (5.2. 3-5). Othello begins to...
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