Othello, the Moor of Venice by William Shakespeare
“I am not what I am.” Thus says Iago. (1, 1, 67) In Othello, the Moor of Venice, the main character is not Othello but rather is Iago. Iago is the original villain character. He set the bar for everyone else. Without Iago in the play there would be no play. By saying I am not what I am, Iago is telling us he is not himself and his actions are not what he normally would do. Iago is the main character in Othello. The others such as Othello and Desdemona are certainly important, but nothing would have happened to anyone if not for Iago’s treachery. Iago likes war. He has always been fighting and does not know how to stop. This is probably why Cassio gets the promotion instead of him. I imagine this is how Shakespeare himself felt from time to time. He felt that he was the lowly grunt worker who was continuously being passed over for others that did not do as much as him. The promotion that Cassio receives is the basis for all of Iago’s hatred. “The negative genius of Iago is fearsome but altogether unquestionable. His sense of injured merit draws from his amazing talents, which he could not have known he possessed and which dazzle him almost as much as they startle us.” Bloom 6. Harold Bloom backs Shakespeare’s writing of Iago’s evil and appeal alike. It’s easy to understand where Iago is coming from in his hatred of Othello. You know that Iago once loved to serve Othello, and thought he was great at war. There is no hatred without love coming first. We are able to surmise that after Iago was continuously being ignored or passed over grated on him to the point of madness. With this madness came the plan to ruin Othello and Cassio’s lives. Iago starts first by inciting Roderigo into getting upset that Desdemona married Othello. Roderigo brings this to Desdemona’s father Barbantio’s attention. Barbantio is outraged that his daughter married a black man and wants Othello killed. Iago also causes...
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