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“Othello” is a play of violent contrasts of character, language and mood. Discuss these and any other contrasts you have found in act 1.

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"Othello" is a play of violent contrasts of character, language and mood. Discuss these and any other contrasts you have found in act 1. Othello, the character, in act 1 is put across to the audience as a character who is dislikeable. This is done by Iago, who "hates the moor". When we finally meet Othello (in line 17 of Act I. II) the audience can see one of the first major contrasts of the play. Othello is not the man that he is made out to be and is in fact the opposite of what Iago made him out to be. This contrast of character between Othello and Iago continues throughout the play, and becomes more obvious as the play continues. Shakespeare seems to want to give clear definitions of good and evil within act I. II. He does this by making Othello and Iago complete opposites of one another. ...read more.


when compared to the racist comment in scenes one and two, "thick lips" and "an abuser of the world". This contrast in language may have been used by Shakespeare to create tension within the scene and I found as an audience member I was trying to anticipate the next moves of all the characters. The chess reference in the film is relevant here as anticipating moves is what a chess player does. The most important contrast for me is the next one. This comment not only seems to change the audience's perception of Othello, but also seems to change the way that Shakespeare portrays him from this point onwards. "Rude am I in my speech" quotes Othello. This has been true up to this point he has not been overly eloquent or articulate, however a transformation seems to take place here. In contrast to the comment he has just made Othello goes on to speak in the most moving speech in the play up to this point. ...read more.


Othello, as a play, has many contrasting emotions, characters, moods and language. However I think that the biggest contrast in act one is the struggle between good and evil. Shakespeare seems to emphasise this several times and leaves no grey area as to who is the 'goodie' and who is the 'baddie'. This division also shows up other contrasts such as the contrasts in character between Iago, Othello and Brabantio. All of whom contrast with each other. Also the contrast between Desdemona and Othello isn't an adverse contrast just an inevitable difference between races. The mood in the play fluctuates from time to time meaning contrasts take place. The best example being the courtroom scene. Finally the language in the play differs from person to person causing violent contrasts between characters and things characters say. The notable example being Othello and his quotation "rude am I in my speech" Act 1 is full of violent contrasts not only in mood, character and language but also in emotion. Shakespeare uses the contrasts to good effect in act 1 to show moral stances and conflicts within the play which will be important later. ...read more.

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