Research Paper-Shakespeare's "Othello"

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  • Topic: Othello, Iago, Brabantio
  • Pages : 5 (1884 words )
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  • Published : May 10, 2008
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Shakespeare's "Othello" is not simply a play. It shows people how jealousy and hateful treachery can drive anyone to tragic end. In this play, the main character is Othello. He is introduced as a tragic hero whose stories of hardships endeared him to his new bride Desdemona. She is truly in love and devoted in trust to Othello. Iago has a reputation for honesty and uses it for dishonest purposes. He is a smart person, but he has a very high opinion of himself, takes delight in his own evil. He knows that he cannot let Othello down, so he wants to have the position of Cassio who is Othello’s loyal lieutenant. In the whole play, Iago continues through out to use tricks and tell lies to accomplish his wishes. Roderigo is a Venetian gentleman deeply in love with Desdemona, and used by Iago. Emilia is Iago’s wife; however, Iago does not really like her. She knows that she could not find another man, so she tries her best to earn her husband’s affection. The affliction of Othello’s character is furthered by Iago’s emphasis upon Othello’s simplicity and honesty, which is sharply contrasted with Iago’s skillfully crafted towers of lies and bejeweled misrepresentations. Iago is a devil pyromaniac. He uses his hateful treachery to let Othello’s jealousy to reach the highest point, then, Othello kills himself. Iago also wants to prove that he can outsmart anyone.

Iago will not accomplish his wish by himself. Therefore, he uses Roderigo and Desdemona’s father Brabantio to help him. Iago tries to arouse Brabantio's anger at Othello by stirring suspicion in the middle of the night. In Act I, Scene I, Iago states “An old black ram is tupping your white ewe.” The word tupping is a nasty term for having sex. Then, Brabantio brings all his people to arrest Othello. Everyone knows Othello is a hero, and Desdemona comes out to tell the truth. At that time, Brabantio knows that he lost his daughter to the Moor, and Iago’s first plan is not successful. However, Iago will not give up. At this point, after Act I, Scene I, Iago totally understands that he could not bring Othello down, but he can try other ways. Each character will fall by the same tragic flaw, since Iago deceives in different methods. However, with an elegant astuteness, he tricks all of them. Hating some people always has its course for destruction. For example, someone kills a boy’s father, and then the boy hates the murderer. However, Iago does not have a serious reason for hating the people who are surrounding him. In Act I, Scene III, Iago exclaims, “I hate the Moor.” He does not tell anyone specifically his reasons why he hates the Moor. He just wants to bring these people down because their positions are higher than he is. In Act I, Scene III, Iago states “Cassio’s a proper man: let me see now; to get his place, an to plume up my will in double knavery.” He immediately thinks of another plan to get his job done. He decides to use the help of Roderigo by saying “The lieutenant to-night watches on the court of guard. First, I must tell thee this; Desdemona is directly in love with him.”(Act II, Scene 1) Iago does not tell Roderigo directly to hate Cassio or want him to bring Cassio down. He just needs to say something that can make Roderigo feel angry with his rival in love. Then he convinces Roderigo to initiate a fight with Cassio, so he could lose his reputation. After Cassio has gotten drunk, gotten into a fight, lost his job, Iago shows how much of a devil he is. He does not run back to home and laugh until morning, but he convinces Cassio that the best way to get his job back is to appeal to Desdemona. No one knows he is a devil, and in Act II, Scene III, Cassio says, “You advise me well…Good night, honest Iago.” Iago knows people feel he is a nice man, and he can get closer to Othello with using his lies and Othello’s jealousy to bring Othello down.

Telling Cassio to go to Desdemona for help is Iago’s plan. He knows that he cannot just say something bad about...
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