Othello Analysis, Essay Example
- Explain Iago’s devilish intentions towards each of these men: Roderigo, Cassio and Othello ? What “heavenly shows” does he put on to deceive each one of his victims?
Iago’s devilish intention toward Roderigo was to double cross him, by manipulating facts and lying to make it look like Roderigo told everybody the secret about Othello eloping with Desdemona, Brabanito’s daughter.
Iago’s devilish intention toward Cassio was to try and get him drunk so that he would mess up. Iago knew that Othello was jealous of Cassio, so he played with Cassio’s mind to stir up trouble and to make him believe that his wife, Desdemona, was having an affair with Cassio.
Iago’s devilish intention toward Othello was to harass him and prevent his marriage from happening, because he was angry that Othello appointed Cassio as his lieutenant. Iago knew Cassio got the job because of his friendship with Iago’s wife, Desdemona.
The “heavenly shows” he puts on to deceive each one of his victims refers to shows of affection, but he is really manipulating them all.
- Describe the difference between Emilia’s view of infidelity and Desdemona’s sentiments about it as revealed by their discussion in Act 5.
Desdemona wouldn’t even think of cheating on her husband and doesn’t understand why anybody else would, even for a lot of money. Emilia, on the other hand, thinks it would be ok for the right amount of money, but not for anything trivial.
- How does Iago pretend to be helping Roderigo? What are his real intentions in regard to Roderigo? How do we find out about them? (See Iagos aside at act 5.1.12-23).
Iago gets Roderigo to trust him, and he considers him the ultimate sucker. Roderigo pays Iago to be the middle man between himself and Desdemona’s friendship. Iago knows that Roderigo is in love with Desdomona, so he makes promises to Roderigo he never intends to keep.
Iago’s real intentions in regard to Roderigo were playing him for a fool, and suckering him into assisting with getting rid of Cassio. Iago tricked Roderigo into plotting to get Cassio out of the lieutenant position, by telling him lies that he would help him get Desdemona.
We find all of this out when Iago desires to kill both Roderigo and Cassio for making him look like a fool. He didn’t want Othello to find out he was responsible for messing up his relationship with Desdemona.
- Identify specific occurrences in which jealousy, justice, and deception are important and explain what is happening to each one?
Jealousy was evident when Roderigo showed he was mad that Othello married Desdemona. Justice occurred in Iago’s mind when he thought it was ok to manipulate and mess up Cassio’s life, because he thought he should have been lieutenant instead of Cassio. Deception is shown with Iago’s all-around manipulating and lying to get what he wants.
- How is justice restored at the end of Othello? Who inherits Othello’s fortunes? Who will be left in the cypress to punish Iago? Who will return to Venice to tell the sad tale?
Justice is served when Iago is thrown into prison and tortured. This shows he got what he was giving to others – pain. Another twist of justice is he doesn’t die. This would be too good for him. He gets to suffer. Also, justice was shown when Cassio’s good name was restored.
Cassio inherits Othello’s fortunes, the Governor of Cypress, Cassio, is left to punish Iago, and Lodovico will return to Venice to tell the sad tale.
- Othello says “oh balmy breath that dost almost persuade/justice to break her sword” (5.2.17-18) what is Othello doing when he says these words? What “justice” does he plan to carry out? Why does he have a mistaken conception of justice in this particular circumstance?
When Othello says the words he is preparing to kiss Desdomona. The “justice” he plans to carry out is killing her for infidelity. He has a mistaken conception of justice in this particular circumstance because he feels justified and his ego is wounded, so he feels he deserves to punish people.
- Iago offers two stories to suggest Desdemona’s infidelity, what are they? (3.3.467-82) (3.3.496-98)
He told Othello that Cassio had Desdemona’s handkerchief and he talked about a dream that Cassio had about Desdomona.
- Could Desdemona have said or done anything to prevent her own tragic death? If so, explain when and what the action she could have taken.
She could have opened her eyes to the fact that Othello was jealous of her spending time with Cassio, even though she was only trying to repair the friendship between the two of them. She should have also told him the truth about the handkerchief.
- What reasons does Iago give for wanting to get revenge against Othello?
Iago was mad that Othello appointed Cassio lieutenant, as a special favor through his friendship with Desdemona. Iago felt that he was more qualified to have the job instead of Cassio.
- Describe the positions on all sides concerning Desdemona’s elopement.
Roderigo was very angry about the elopement because he wanted Desdomona. Iago was using it to frame Roderigo. Desdemona was being submissive. Women were to show complete loyalty to men in those times, almost like slaves. Othello must have thought it the greatest idea because he loved her so. Brabanito, Desdomona’s father, was enraged by their elopement. Women were supposed to ask for permission to marry in that time.
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