Emilia Speaks Her Mind
One of Shakespeare’s famous plays ‘Othello’ is about a black man who marries a white woman, and then murders his wife because of unfounded jealousy. The play also contains another dysfunctional marriage between Iago and Emilia, which also ends with the husband murdering his wife. Emilia, Iago’s wife, has never received love from her husband. In Act 4, Scene 3 line 95-115, Emilia’s speech is structured as if she experienced a lot of stress. She believes that men and women are basically the same and have equal desires and needs. Although she hasn’t spoken with intensity, from her style, her use of literally devices, and also her monologue structure, the audience can feel her distrust of her husband that has been present for a long time.
Primarily, by looking at the structure of Emilia’s speech, spectators can notice that Emilia is not just encouraging Desdemona, she is also cheering herself. The dictions that Emilia used like “throwing restraint,” (4.3.101), “scant,” (4.3.102), “galls” (4.3.103), and “see and smell,” (4.3.104) pulls its statements against the iambic line. Also her speech shifts from question to statement. This structure suggests how Emilia has been denied such freedom by Iago. It illustrates that the women may speak their minds and hearts to each other.
The second aspect of Emilia’s monologue is her use of literary devices to express what she had conquered while living with Iago. She uses metaphors to support her opinion that men are responsible for the failure of the women. She states that when their husbands stop carrying out their duties with their wives, sometimes women find other romance, “Say that they slack their duties, And pour our treasures into foreign laps,” (4.3.98-99). With her comment,
“…They see and smell They see and smell
And have their palates both for sweet and sour,
As husbands have.” (4.3.105-108)
Emilia is comparing man and women and