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"A mysterious creature of unlimited cynicism" Explore the character of Iago in the light of this comment, focussing on his soliloquies and his treatment of the other characters.

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AS LEVEL ENGLISH LITERATURE MODULE 3: SHAKESPEARE Written by Alex Mitcheson. " A mysterious creature of unlimited cynicism" Explore the character of Iago in the light of this comment, focussing on his soliloquies and his treatment of the other characters. " But it was no sign of stupidity in Othello. For his opinion of Iago was the opinion of practically everyone who knew him: and that opinion was that Iago was before all things "honest"." A C Bradley Iago's perceived honesty is his great and enabling ability, which allows him to manipulate and cause events without the other characters realizing. I agree to some extent with Bradley on this point, and there is sufficent evidence to point this out. Furthermore it is not just Othello that instates trust upon him but it is the majority of the other characters too. Roderigo is a perfect example, his stupidity ultimately allows himself to consider Iago trustworthy, the measure of his stupidity is based upon the fact Iago is conning him out of money telling him it is being used to help him win Desdemona . ...read more.


She is a character of great will who has herself disowned by her family only so that she can love Othello, yet such passion and strong loving feelings are absent in our subject. He himself has very little love for his wife Emilia yet does at one point refer to loving Othello, is it made clear here that homosexual tendencies are within Iago, or is it just a apt expression for the period? It is her relentless attempts to heal the rift between Cassio and Othello that Iago takes advantage of; and with a quick mind turns it around to make Desdemona appear to be cuckolding her husband, it is her ignorance that separates her from Iago. Cassio can be said to be a smooth, well educated and very self-conscious; all the things Iago appears not to be. Although Iago does show intellect, Cassio is a arithmetician and educated thoroughly in the art of war but has little first hand experience, something our Iago does have. Reputation can be said to be important to this character, "Reputation, reputation, reputation! ...read more.


His ending two lines for the third scene of the first act are very poignant in our audiences view of him, particularly as this is the opening act when views and perceptions are most likely ever to be made. "I have't; it is engender'd hell and night must bring this monstrous birth to the worlds light" Act 1 Scene 3 Iago's first soliloquy These ending two lines in my opinion make himself appear to be almost devilish, yet at the same time can be said to be melodramatic. What Shakespeare has done here has made him appear almost god like as he is calling to the elements to help him with his plans. There is one element of this play that one must consider when reviewing Iago and his thoughts, he has all the soliloquies bar one in which Cassio states his thoughts. Then for our audience it is made easier for a bad opinion to be formed of him as his evil intentions are laid bare right in front of you. Unquestionably this first soliloquy must be the nail in the coffin for Iago's "good guy" image, if he did at all have one with any of the audience. ...read more.

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