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Othello Recreative: Desdemona

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Introduction

Othello Recreative: Desdemona The poor soul sat singing by a sycamore tree Sing all a green willow; Her hand on her bosom, her head on her knee, Sing willow, willow; A piercing hunger, as if from a dagger Consumes for the sake of my lord. It is a pain of the bosom Not familiar to my young body. The fresh streams ran by her and murmured her moans; Sing willow, willow, willow; Her salt tears fell from her and softened the stones- Sing willow, willow, willow- Alas, Cyprus, you are not kind Venice. Gone is the water, intertwined with its people. Alas, Cyprus, yours is a cage from which I will never be free- But I will never soften your stones For my lord is stronger than itching eyes. Weeping serves no purpose, and that I know well, It never pleases the lord, nor does it cleanse as some women think- Sing all a green willow must be my garland. ...read more.

Middle

Although this seems to be quite a raw and animalistic theme for the innocent Desdemona, in the case of my recreative "a piercing hunger" could simply be interpreted as an expression; or viewed as Iago would have meant it, which shows her to be a strong character at this point. There are of course dark undertones of murder. The fresh streams ran by her and murmured her moans; The verse beginning "The fresh streams ran" includes a reference to tears; therefore has a close link to water. For that reason I brought in a comparison of the isolated island of Cyprus, surrounded by water, and the city of Venice; where Othello and Desdemona's relationship was stable, and water was intertwined with the city rather than a boundary. Some critics interpret the physical settings of Venice and Cyprus as having immediate effects on the marriage; as if the isolation is the final straw that ruins the marriage. ...read more.

Conclusion

In this case, she's asking Othello to lie with her; even though she knows he'll kill her, she still shows her undying love, which has been apparent throughout the play. By drawing attention to the wedding sheets, she could be showing him that she knows what his intentions are, but she could also be trying to restore the stability they had when they got married in Venice. More subtly this could reference the lies she told for Othello's sake, about the handkerchief and her final line before death, when she lies and says (messily) that she was her own murderer, to save Othello. This would supposedly send her to Hell. It also links smoothly to the final line of the song; If I court moe women, you'll couch with moe men. In this context, to couch means to lie down for concealment; to hide; to be concealed; to be included or be involved darkly, which is certainly what Othello seems to be doing. 1029 ?? ?? ?? ?? Freya Gilmore ...read more.

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