Othello - Notions of Powerplay

Topics: Othello, Iago, Clearing Pages: 2 (679 words) Published: February 18, 2011
How effectively does Othello offer insight into the notion of Powerplay?

Othello embraces many instances involving the dynamic of Powerplay. This can be examined through the relationships of characters: being Othello, Iago, Roderigo and Desdemona. Iago's relationship with Othello is where the clearest examples of Powerplay can be viewed. Iago maintains an overarching power over Othello in the play. Iago is successful in manipulating both the truth and Othello, describing Casio's departure from his meeting with Desdemona: "that he would steal away so guilty like, seeing you coming". Iago's tremendous gift with language allows him to maintain power over Othello by essentially planting doubt in his mind. Throughout the play, Iago is successful in manipulating Othello through his artificial language which portrays himself as an 'honest' friend who is there for assistance. This is reiterated throughout the play with constant repetition of the word 'honest' when describing Iago and this is highly ironic as he is clearly the most dishonest character in Othello. Iago is often seen enraging Othello by providing extra, unnecessary details about Desdemona's supposed betrayal. Whilst attempting to remain innocent and of a moral high ground , Iago's gift with language enables this manipulation to have a greater effect on his victim, Othello. This is clearly conveyed when he describes Desdemona's unfaithfulness with Cassio where he lies "with her, on her, what you will". This has an astronomical impact on the Moor who's response is furious and vicious. Iago's manipulation is further explored when he quotes after Othello has a epileptic fit "my medicine, work!". This enables the audience to understand Iago's thoughts and offers them insight as he acknowledges that his medicine, being his language is having a huge effect on Othello. He is now in complete control and possesses complete power. Powerplay can be notable seen through the relationship of Othello and Desdemona as...
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