Could one ordinary woman be more intelligent than several highly skilled male warriors? In William Shakespeare's Othello, although Emilia plays a small role, she makes a powerful impact. Her omnipotent bravado brings us to the conclusion that she is the reincarnation of Esther from the Bible and that she is a mirror image of today's risk taking woman. Emilia's insight brings perspective to not only what is righteous but also to the darkness of bestiality portrayed throughout the play. Although the maiden is underestimated because she is a woman, she proves herself time and time again that her bold demeanor is what interprets her to be the heroine and inspiration for William Shakespeare's Othello.
Shakespeare has brought the Bible to life through the character of Emilia. Her passion for justice and intelligence reminds us of Esther. Emilia’s unusual ability to talk down to powerful men of authority portrays the bold persona of Esther. The maiden’s brave act is a replication of the scene where Esther risks execution by appearing unannounced to her husband, King Xerxes, just so the truth would prevail! Emilia has no hesitation when is comes to speaking her mind, even to a powerful war general. Emilia even curses that, “…may his [Othello’s] pernicious soul/ rot half a grain a day!” (5.2. 154-155) She even puts Othello beneath a homeless drunk, “A beggar in his drink/ could not have laid such terms upon his callet.” (4.2.120-121), where Desdemona’s friend describes that even a drunk would not even call his mistress a whore. This exposes Othello and reveals him as insolent. Emilia’s great risk was selflessly done to defend unrighteous accusations directed to Desdemona. She goes as far as labeling the pernicious liars as snakes and tells them to, “let heaven requite it with the serpent’s curse!” (4.2.19). The serpent refers to the falling of Adam and Eve out of the Garden of Eden. Later in the play, Othello falls out of his high position of power to the...
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