It is based on the Cinthio short story Un Capitano Moro (‘A Moorish Captain’), and it is one of Shakespeare’s most popular plays, dealing with such themes as jealousy, envy, undeserved reputations, gossip, and the issue of racial prejudice.. On this last issue, it is necessary to examine the unclear … Act 1 Scene 1 establishes the context of a patriarchal society, and this is continued in Act 1 Scene 3 with Desdemona summoned to the Senate to defend her new marriage. She receives Desdemona’s handkerchief from Cassio and gives it back to him when she discovers it is another woman’s. Othello (/ oʊ ˈ θ ɛ l oʊ /) is a character in Shakespeare's Othello (c. 1601–1604). He leads an intense life, swinging between triumph and dread. Don’t waste Your Time Searching For a Sample, Get Your Job Done By a Professional Skilled Writer. One of Othello’s admirable qualities is that he believes that men should be transparent and honest as he is; “Certain, men should be what they seem” (Act 3 Scene 3 Line 134). He vows to destroy Othello and Desdemona’s happiness in revenge. Cookie information is stored in your browser and performs functions such as recognising you when you return to our website and helping our team to understand which sections of the website you find most interesting and useful. She also suggests Othello is in an ambiguous position because of his race. Description of the Battle of Lepanto in Knolles's History of the Turks. For these reasons, I am proposing two potential readings, or interpretations of the play, a feminist reading and a reading based on the themes of class and power. In Othello, Shakespeare makes use of colors to represent ideas or […], Our first impression of Othello comes from a conversation between Iago, Roderigo, and Brabantio. Spell. But here’s my husband;/ And so much duty as my mother showed/ To you, preferring you before her father, / So much I challenge…” In doing this, Desdemona shows simultaneously her strong will by “challenging” her father, and her reliance on the patriarchal structures inherent in her life. Ho! Although he was a man who was a leader, of high military/social standing, he was still simply a man. This text is NOT unique. Iago, the antagonist of the play, interrupted the play by convincing Othello that Desdemona is unfaithful. Iago manipulates such power structure as the military, race and gender to undermine Othello and bring about his ultimate downfall. Othello: Study Guide | SparkNotes. PLAY. Perhaps when one […], Imagery, as defined by Webster’s Dictionary, is the use of vivid figurative language to represent objects, actions, or ideas. also offered here. With the development of psychoanalysis and its application to literary characters, twentieth-century critics have expanded […], Shakespeare’s tragedy Othello has been brought to the stage hundreds, thousands of times with many different interpretations and readings due to its vast history of literary debate and analysis. We are using cookies to give you the best experience on our website. She, as a woman, is a designated prize or asset to her father (owner), and then husband, as reflected Brabantio’s question, “Oh thou foul thief, Where hast thou stow’d my daughter?” as one “stows” their possessions. The only way she can gain independence from her father is by submitting to another man, her husband. The villain Iago from " Othello " is a central character, and understanding him is key to understanding Shakespeare's entire play. Feminist readings of the play explore the gender politics of Othello. Modern audiences, too, have certain expectations and ideas about the play, and it is vital, when producing a play like Othello to take these expectations into consideration. Critical Analysis of The Tragedy Of Othello. Is Iago evil? Surname 1 Student’s name Professor’s name Course Date Critical analysis of Shakespeare’s Othello Introduction Othello was first crafted on 1604 (Jowett andJohn), motivated by the complex geopolitical issues of that time that the historicists are seeking to unravel by placing the literary works in an historical framework. Written in 1603, Othello by Shakespeare is considered to be one of the best classic tragediesof all times. By continuing we’ll assume you’re on board with our cookie policy. Iagos will for “vengeance” on Cassio, who has been promoted to a greater army rank than himself? Shakespeare’s tragedy Othello has been brought to the stage hundreds, thousands of times with many different interpretations and readings due to its vast history of literary debate and analysis. Othello, the Moor of Venice, is a tragedy Shakespeare is believed to have written in about 1603. The audience should be left in no doubt, this is not merely Iago’s work, but also the state’s, by way of negligence. A terrible storm has struck Cyprus, just as the Turks were about to approach. If you disable this cookie, we will not be able to save your preferences. Othello synonyms, Othello pronunciation, Othello translation, English dictionary definition of Othello. Othello Character Analysis in Othello by Shakespeare - In the play Othello, the character of Othello as the main protagonist towers above other characters in terms of nobility and power. Emilia challenges the traditional female characteristic of silence, after Desdemona’s death expressing her anger saying, “As ignorant as dirt! Murder! Othello’s final speech is an important aspect of this reading. When the violence settles and the Senate members, including the Duke, regain control at the end of Act 5 Scene 2, Lodovico’s closing speech should echo this, shifting the blame entirely onto Iago, reinforced by the lines “Look on the tragic loading of this bed:/ This is thy work”. Othello cannot be excused from the murder of his wife. Analysis of the Significance of Othello’s last speech, Critical Study – Othello – Jealousy Essay Question, The Theme Of Evil In Shakespeare’s Othello, Explore Shakespeare’s Use of Soliloquy in ‘Othello’. You can find out more about which cookies we are using or switch them off in settings. A messenger enters, and confirms that the Turkish fleet was broken apart by the storm, and that Cassio has arrived, though Othello is still at sea. Thou has done a deed –. Othello is a brave and competent soldier of advanced years and Moorish background in the service of the Venetian Republic.He elopes with Desdemona, the beautiful daughter … Strictly Necessary Cookie should be enabled at all times so that we can save your preferences for cookie settings. Keywords Shakespeare, Controversy, Tragedy, Othello, Iago. Since its onset to date, Othello has become one of the few plays by shake sphere to be … The focus scenes, according to this reading, are Act 1 Scene 3, Act 3 Scene 3 and Act 5 Scene 2. The story of an African general in the Venetian army who is tricked into suspecting his wife of adultery, Othello is a tragedy of sexual jealousy. Critical Approaches to Othello There have been numerous interpretations of Othello over the last 400 years. May … Created by. She clearly outlines the nature of women’s status: “You are lord of all my duty, / I am hitherto your daughter. Though I lost twenty lives. Murder! By doing this, she ultimately pays a price: her life. In Act 4 Scene 3 the two characters to voice their opinions about men, Desdemona fully reveals her childish innocence with her question about faithfulness: “Wouldst though do such a deed for all the world?” Emilia reveals her sense of humour and practical realism: “The world’s a huge thing: it is a great price for a small vice” and “Nor I neither by this heavenly light: I might do’t as well I’th dark.” Emilia’s conclusion that it is men who commit adultery without moral punishment and her statement of sexual equality is an important message within the play. The trait Iago abuses in Roderigo is his naive nature. Write. The three focus scenes here are Act 1 Scene 3, Act 4 Scene 3 and Act 5 Scene 2. Boosta Ltd - 10 Kyriakou Matsi, Liliana building, office 203, 1082, Nicosia, Cyprus. Ho! This can be visually and dramatically demonstrated by Iago’s physical dominance over Othello, as Othello writhes on the floor, and symbolises the role and power reversal that has taken place with Othello’s compliance, but without his knowledge. Shakespeare possibly wrote The Tragedy of Othello, the Moor of Venice in 1603 or 1604, as we know it was first performed on November 1, 1604, at court. She receives Desdemona’s handkerchief from Cassio and gives it back to him when she discovers it is another woman’s. Essay by redlauren, High School, 11th grade, September 2004 . The Turkish attack may have been quelled, but it also bodes badly for Othello's ship. A feminist reading would give voice to the play’s three female characters: Desdemona, Emilia and Bianca (the play’s only female survivor), provoking sympathy within the audience for them and portraying them as the true victims of the avoidable tragedy. We've changed a part of the website. Flashcards. His is the longest part with 1,070 lines. Write a critical analysis of the relationship of Othello and Desdemona in Shakespeare`s tragedy Othello. But here’s my husband;/ And so much duty as my mother showed/ To you, preferring you before her father, / So much I challenge…” In doing this, Desdemona shows simultaneously her strong will by “challenging” her father, and her reliance on the patriarchal structures inherent in her life. When the violence settles and the Senate members, including the Duke, regain control at the end of Act 5 Scene 2, Lodovico’s closing speech should echo this, shifting the blame entirely onto Iago, reinforced by the lines “Look on the tragic loading of this bed:/ This is thy work”. Read a character analysis of Othello, plot summary, and important quotes. Get tips and ideas in OUTLINE. Indeed, not only is “seeing” and the gap between appearance and reality a central theme of the play, it overlaps with other major thematic strands and sheds light on still others, including the theme of patriarchy and the political state. The only way she can gain independence from her father is by submitting to another man, her husband. This juxtaposition between Othello’s transparency and Iago’s duality identifies him as a sympathetic character despite his actions. A feminist reading also recognises that it is the men’s deplorable attitudes in regard to women and gender that in part caused the tragedy, for instance, Othello’s response to Emilia insistence that Desdemona is honest, “She says enough; yet she’s a simple bawd/That cannot say as much” (Act 4 Sc 2). Othello is one of Shakespeare’s five best-known and widely studied tragedies, along with Hamlet, Macbeth, King Lear, and Romeo and Juliet.But as is so often with a well-known text, we don’t know this one nearly as well as we think we do: Othello has more in it than jealousy, the ‘green-eyed monster’, and (implied) racial hatred.These themes are central to the play’s power, but one of the … Two interpretations of Othello: a feminist reading, and a reading based on class and power. Perhaps he could give his eulogy speech in an upright stance, to symbolise this. Othello’s Integrity . Iago’s cunning strength lies in his ability to undermine every single character through their weaknesses. Critical Interpretations of Othello. We use cookies to give you the best experience possible. Though I lost twenty lives. Othello changes from a noble and just groom who declares, “But that I love the gentle Desdemona,” (I,ii,27) to a foul-minded, irrational husband who vows, “I’ll tear her to pieces.” (III,iii,483) He changes from treating her gently to striking her in public, calling her a whore, and murdering her in an unfounded jealous rage. Othello, despite his stature as a powerful and strategic army general, could never, for racial reasons, quite reach the top or fit in. Its thematic concerns are expansive and open to interpretation: they range from tragedy, love, power, jealousy, trust, class and race, and the actions of its characters often … Shakespeare’s tragedy Othello has been brought to the stage hundreds, thousands of times with many different interpretations and readings due to its vast history of literary debate and analysis. Moral order restored. In the context of this reading, Iago would be portrayed as a cynical sociopath, as opposed to inherently evil Machiavellian, willing to do whatever is required to get what he wants. Help! Shakespeare took the idea for Othello from a tale of doomed ... Postcolonial reading: ‘something from Cyprus’. Iago asserts the power of his (apparent) friendship over Othello, resulting in Othello’s swift move to jealousy, and begins constructing a power structure of his own by guaranteeing Othello reliant on his opinion and ensuring that Othello cannot discuss the issue with his wife or his friend and lieutenant, Cassio. This article discusses four recent critical approaches: feminist, new historicist, marxist and post-colonial. In the context of this reading, Iago would be portrayed as a cynical sociopath, as opposed to inherently evil Machiavellian, willing to do whatever is required to get what he wants. Don't be confused, we're about to change the rest of it. Shakespeare's tragedy Othello has been brought to the stage hundreds, thousands of times with many different … This kind of reading places emphasis on the class and power themes inherent in the play and its Victorian war setting, drawing attention to the villainy of the politicians and Senate of Venice, to whom Othello is just a slave to the state, and who fail to recognise the foul plot being played out in his army by Iago. n. the protagonist of a tragedy by Shakespeare, Othello , a Moor who is tricked into believing that his wife Desdemona is unfaithful. The character's origin is traced to the tale "Un Capitano Moro" in Gli Hecatommithi by Giovanni Battista Giraldi Cinthio.There, he is simply referred to as the Moor. Reflecting the culture in which Othello was written, none of the three female characters is ultimately treated as an equal by the men. Test. Othello, in his speech to the Senate, which is usually considered noble and dignified, says “For such proceedings I am charged withal – I won his daughter.” (Act 1, Sc 3, 93-94). Introduction. Iago essentially writes the play’s main plot, takes a key part in it, and gives first-hand direction to the others, most notably to Othello. Further, in Act 4 Scene 1, where Othello’s rage leads to an epileptic fit. He is different from those around him, due to his origins and his life history, but he shares their religion, values, and patriotism to Venice. Help! Dolan defines him as a ‘domestic tyrant who murders his wife on spurious grounds’. The play ends with the suicide of Othelloand raises the feeling of pity among the readers and those who watch the play. She clearly outlines the nature of women’s status: “You are lord of all my duty, / I am hitherto your daughter. It tells the tale of Othello, a general from Moorish (North Africa) who marries a Venetian … Pay special attention to the interracial character of this relationship and the use of racist […], Shakespeare’s character, Othello, was definitely a believable character. Iago asserts the power of his (apparent) friendship over Othello, resulting in Othello’s swift move to jealousy, and begins constructing a power structure of his own by guaranteeing Othello reliant on his opinion and ensuring that Othello cannot discuss the issue with his wife or his friend and lieutenant, Cassio. The three focus scenes here are Act 1 Scene 3, Act 4 Scene 3 and Act 5 Scene 2. Iago essentially writes the play’s main plot, takes a key part in it, and gives first-hand direction to the others, most notably to Othello. Additional materials, such as the best quotations, synonyms and word definitions to make your writing easier are Othello cannot be excused from the murder of his wife. Get a verified writer to help you with Two interpretations of Othello. Othello, in his speech to the Senate, which is usually considered noble and dignified, says “For such proceedings I am charged withal – I won his daughter.” (Act 1, Sc 3, 93-94). Downloaded 68 times. Othello, the protagonist of the tragedy, the moor of Venice is trapped in the conspiracies of his competitors and subordinates. Othello, a classic tale of love, jealousy and deceit, is considered one of the greatest dramas of Shakespeare. This also accentuates the fact that, although very business-like and matter-of-fact, the Venetian state is playing with people’s lives. 0 Like 0 Tweet. Two interpretations of Othello Essay. For these reasons, I am proposing two potential readings, or interpretations of the play, a feminist reading and a reading based on the themes of class and power. In his first speech he subconsciously acknowledges the social pressure he is under" This means that every time you visit this website you will need to enable or disable cookies again. Help! Murder! Attention must also be paid to Bianca, who plays an unknowing role in Othello’s jealousy. Othello is the protagonist of the play who marries to Desdemona despite the difference between their ages. The “moor” Othello (a military general from North Africa) and Desdemona, the white daughter of a Venetian nobleman, fall in love and marry in secret. Special offer for LiteratureEssaySamples.com readers. This kind of reading places emphasis on the class and power themes inherent in the play and its Victorian war setting, drawing attention to the villainy of the politicians and Senate of Venice, to whom Othello is just a slave to the state, and who fail to recognise the foul plot being played out in his army by Iago. Indeed, not only is “seeing” and the gap between appearance and reality a central theme of the play, it overlaps with other major thematic strands and sheds light on still others, including the theme of patriarchy and the political state. It is based on the story Un Capitano Moro by Cinthio, first published in 1565. Specifically, Othello and Roderigo are the main victims of his lies and deceit. Thou has done a deed –. Dolan says that Othello can be linked to all these ‘spectres of disorder’. The two obvious ways are, one the title and the repetition of jealousy in the chorus and in […], This last speech of Othello is his way of expressing to viewers how he would have liked them to see the events of the play. By the close of the play, it should be clear that Othello was an expendable resource, and will be replaced by someone else, probably also an outsider, desperate to climb the ladder of authority. that it is a Christian tragedy––Othello’s fall is a version of Adam’s, while the fate of Desdemona is an inversion of Eve’s ; or that its plot is incredible––or that the plot has ‘surrealistic rightness’. The play Othello comprises 5 acts each playing a significant part in the development of the plot. It is said to be part of the response to James I’s heroic poem, ‘Lepanto’. This eulogy should help him regain nobility in the state’s eyes, as he, unlike Iago, accepts his guilt and shows remorse, and the audience’s sympathies lie with Othello. Two interpretations of Othello. Murder! First performed around 1604, the play is also a pioneering exploration of racial prejudice. Shakespeare’s tragedy Othello has been brought to the stage hundreds, thousands of times with many different interpretations and readings due to its vast history of literary debate and analysis. This allows the play to end in a reassertion of the moral world which is part of the raison … Othello who is a noble black warrior in the Venetian army that secretly married a beautiful white woman called Desdemona who is the daughter of a prominent senator named Brabantio. Othello is manipulated by the truly evil and duplicitous Iago who has so … Cinthio's Gli Hecatommithi, an Italian source for Othello and Measure for Measure. Act 1 Scene 1 establishes the context of a patriarchal society, and this is continued in Act 1 Scene 3 with Desdemona summoned to the Senate to defend her new marriage. Our second impression of him comes from Othello himself. Students looking for free, top-notch essay and term paper samples on various topics. By the close of the play, it should be clear that Othello was an expendable resource, and will be replaced by someone else, probably also an outsider, desperate to climb the ladder of authority. The stillness of the bedroom scenes preceding Desdemona and Emilia’s murder are essential to this reading, both beautiful and dreadful, as the women are completely blind to their fate. Consequently, at the conclusion of Act 5, Othello should not be portrayed as a tragic hero, nor she he regain his prior noble stature, given his murderous and unwarranted actions, and the audience’s sympathies should lie with the play’s women. Othello, despite his stature as a powerful and strategic army general, could never, for racial reasons, quite reach the top or fit in. Last 400 years outsider who is tricked into believing that his wife on spurious ’... Be linked to all these ‘ spectres of disorder ’ she receives Desdemona s... 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