• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Many definitions of tragedy claim that at the end of the play positives have emerged. Is it possible to see anything positive in the ending of Othello?

Extracts from this document...


Many definitions of tragedy claim that at the end of the play positives have emerged. Is it possible to see anything positive in the ending of Othello? Shakespeare delivers the concept of tragedy as an adaptation to classical tragedy allows many debates to be opened as to whether or any of his influences, e.g. Senecan drama and the political side in the Elizabethan era, allows the audience, to cast judgements upon whether or not positivity can be drawn. With many criticisms on the construction of the play, such as Rymer saying it was "unbelievable", it appeared that the negatives out shadowed the positives. The frail nature of the play, and the hamartia of the characters themselves, either allowed the audience to be cathartic or not to be cathartic, and this catharsis heavily influenced the audience's response to the play. The undergoing of catharsis is one of the issues debated by one of the early critical interpreters, Rymer (1), and, A.C Bradley(2). A.C Bradley said that the "tension is very painful", and the "remaining of the play permit of very little relief". This judgement was based upon the time scaling of the tragedy and how when the "middle of the tragedy is reached", extreme tension arises and a catastrophe occurs for the audience as the conflict appears to develops very "slowly". ...read more.


as god created 'order'. Towards the end of the play, we ask our self whether Othello dies loving Desdmona, with 'order' being maintained, or not loving Desdemona, leaving a sense of disorder at the end of the play. Othello says: "I kissed thee ere I killed thee". This perfect balance is made by the assonance of 'kissed' and 'killed' and shows perhaps a balance between love and death, and how Othello isn't dying upon hate, nor love, but both, as he doesn't accept why he killed Desdesdemona, but does take some responsibility in the "I". This shows some limbo of disorder and order, and there is, therefore, some sort of chaos towards the end. Eliot commented that Othello is only "trying to cheer himself up". To an extent, yes, as Othello is trying to rationalise the situation, but ultimately Othello tries to regain his nobility by attempting to not die with hate, as disorder will be maintained and the world will become fragmented. Othello's attempt to maintain order is positive positive, yet the outcome is negative due to disorder In the 1989 production of the play (Starring Ian Mckellen), the final image is left on Iago, which leaves the viewers unsatisfied. ...read more.


This satirises Christianity in a way, as the bible is invaluable and Othello 'goes against it' by being immoral. Therefore we can now say that Othello does not maintain a heroic figure, but is merely a coward. As a whole, we question whether the deception we had as an audience from the long time scale and the delay results in a lack of catharsis, and therefore seeing the love as not admirable meant viewing the end with negativity, or can we think of Iago's love as homosexual as he blatantly thinks that sex between man and woman is disgusting (a black ram is tupping your white ewe'), and therefore see through the eyes of the 17th century as 'justice' being done by Iago being imprisoned. Justice has been done because in the 17th century, being "homosexual" was sodomy and therefore one can see this is satisfaction and view the end in a positive light. If my interpretation was taken into account of Iago being possibly "homosexual", we can see how Shakespeare reverses tragic convention on the Elizabethan era, and we may think that Shakespeare delved his political views into the book as at the time, this was the only way to express your views. ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Othello section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Othello essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    To what extent is language central to the understanding of Othello and Macbeth

    4 star(s)

    but to be in her company, that he is restrained and honourable and not the lustful animal Iago implies. Othello's self discipline is also shown through his actions when Brabantio confronts him. He asks for the men to 'keep up your bright swords' (I ii l.59).

  2. Re-read Iago(TM)s soliloquies at the end of Acts I and II. How might ...

    that Iago's poison has influenced Othello and almost transformed Othello into a man like Iago. 'She was foul'. Othello would never describe a woman like this but Iago's view of women has influenced him and therefore he is now thinking like Iago.

  1. How far do we see different attitudes to love presented in Othello?

    Arguably, Iago displays no affection to Emilia at all. He shoos her away the moment she helps him fulfil his want of getting Desdemona's handkerchief and calls her "foolish". All in all, Iago's skepticism of human nature has consequently made him reduce the concept of love to one that is totally devoid of feeling and entirely made of lust,

  2. In Othello Shakespeare explores the nature of social prejudice. How far does your reading ...

    Shakespeare further embellishes this already extreme prejudice by the tone of Brabantio. The contrast between the calm and measured style of Othello and the angry hysterics of Brabantio is striking, and effectively portrays Othello as the rational and approachable character, whilst highlighting the lunacy that can so often accompany prejudice through the depiction of Brabantio and his frenzied speech.

  1. It has been claimed that the women in Shakespeare(TM)s Othello lack power and importance; ...

    she bade him that "If I ever had a friend who loved me [her], I should teach him my story and that alone would woo me [her]." In this sense she can not be considered merely a device, as she persuades Othello, not the other way around.

  2. Othello and Desdemonas love at the beginning of the play is built on mutual ...

    In Act 1 Scene 3, Othello used language effectively to defend his marriage and keep Desdemona, stating she was ?half the wooer? [I.iii. 177]. His speeches in the senate were grandiose and full of metaphor, hyperbole and traditional archaisms, claiming ?She loved me for the dangers I had passed, and I loved her, that she did pity them? [I.iii.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work