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

How does Iago manipulate characters and bring about their downfall in Shakespeare's Othello?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

This managed to get me an A. DO NOT COPY, use it to help you make yours better. Othello Coursework How does Iago manipulate characters and bring about their downfall in Shakespeare's Othello? Introduction The play 'Othello' was created by William Shakespeare. Othello is a tale set in Venice at the time when adultery was a hanging offence. It is a tale all about jealousy and manipulation by one of the main characters, Iago. It was originally created by Giraldi Cinthio and was titled: 'The Story of Disdemona of Venice and the Moorish Captain' Shakespeare created his play by taking the characters and location and then adapting it to his own style for effect. Iago manipulates the characters by revealing and exploiting their fatal flaws to bring about their downfall. Iago uses Othello's jealousy of Cassio to make Othello believe he is having an affair with Desdemona. Iago uses Desdemona's trust and love for Othello to bring about her downfall. Iago even uses his wife's trust to make her not notice his schemes. Iago also uses Cassio's fatal flaw, trust. Cassio is in love with Desdemona. Iago has his own weakness too, greed. He is greedy for power and is jealous of Cassio for being promoted above him, and will do anything to stop Othello and Cassio. In act 1 scene 1, Iago starts to manipulate Othello straight away. Iago is speaking to Roderigo about how he despises Othello and wants revenge. Iago refers to Othello as 'it' or 'him' never speaking his name, this is used to make Iago sound more devious, and to give more effect to the scene. Iago carries on and says that he also hates Cassio for getting 'his job' by being promoted to lieutenant ahead of him, a promotion, Iago feels, should have belonged to him. Iago vows that he will get revenge upon Othello and Cassio, "I follow him to serve my turn upon him. ...read more.

Middle

Yet I persuade myself to tell the truth." This statement gives Othello the impression that Iago is loyal and trustworthy, and will keep a secret with his life, but if Othello where to ask him, he will tell. This is dramatic irony, as Iago caused the fight and is giving Othello a false image of friendship. Cassio loses his job, and he asks Desdemona to convince Othello to give him his job back. This makes Othello suspicious of their relationship, as Desdemona is constantly telling Othello to give Cassio his job back. Othello goes to talk to Iago, and asks him what he knows about Cassio and Desdemona's relationship. Iago tells very little, often repeating himself to try and make Othello want to know more. Iago acts concerned for Othello and tells him that there is a seed of doubt in Othello's mind, "O beware of jealousy, it is the green-eyed monster which doth mark the meat it feeds on." Iago says this tin order to make Othello think that he is a friend and is trustworthy. This is dramatic irony as Iago was the person who planted the doubt in Othello's mind to begin with. Iago continues to play mind game with Othello by making him doubt Desdemona's innocence, "Look at your wife; observe her well with Cassio; wear your eyes thus, not jealous nor secure." Saying this makes Othello suspicious of Desdemona's faithfulness, and makes him believe that Cassio and Desdemona are having an affair. Iago continues to build up Othello's suspicions by stating, "She did deceive her father, marrying you." This makes Othello think that Desdemona is capable of lies and deceit, and she could be deceiving him as well. Othello then gets really paranoid about Desdemona and Cassio's friendship, which is exactly how Iago was trying to make him think. This shows that Othello is totally under Iago's control. Iago carries on to manipulate Othello's mind, he keeps manipulating him so much that Othello starts to doubt his reasons for marriage, "Why did I marry?" ...read more.

Conclusion

She explains how Iago has managed to manipulate people up to the deaths of Roderigo, Desdemona, and the serious injury of Cassio. Soon Iago, Montano and Gratiano and others enter. Emilia confesses to Iago that she has told Othello about his evil deeds and sly manipulation, and Iago denies it, trying to make himself appear innocent as usual. Emilia continues, and gets Iago so wound up that Iago kills his wife. Othello gets so heartbroken by finding out that Desdemona was innocent, and it was all Iago's manipulation that convinced him otherwise, that he kills himself out of grief. In the final speech, Iago is being sentenced to torture for all his crimes, "The time, the place, the torture, O' I enforce it." Iago manipulates all the characters, in different ways. Othello was the main focus of Iago's manipulation. Iago manages to make Othello feel that Desdemona is having an affair with Cassio. He manipulates Bianca by making her find the handkerchief, a wedding present from Othello to Desdemona. Iago very cleverly manipulated every character subtly without them realising until the damage had been done. Iago managed this by using rhetoric in his manipulation. He uses Ethos - the use of an authority or educator to break up arguments - and he uses Pathos - the use of emotive language and imagery to add dramatic effect - and finally Logos - the use of logic, data and statistics. He carefully uses all of these on all characters throughout the play to bring about their deaths. An example of Ethos was when Iago talks to Montano about Othello and Cassio's drink problem, an example of Pathos is when Iago talks to Brabantio about Othello and Desdemona's marriage, and an example of Logos is when Bianca is seen with the handkerchief by Othello. All of this clever and sly manipulation leads to the downfall of several characters, and the imprisonment of himself, (which was unplanned). Othello page 1 of 6 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE 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 GCSE Othello essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    How does Shakespeare use language and stagecraft to show Othello's changing feelings towards Dedemona ...

    4 star(s)

    He says that he would not mind if he had been sharing her with the whole camp, if he had not known. He also suggests that he now believes Iago, and thinks that Desdemona is cheating on him. However, he still retains some affection for her, as he describes her as 'sweet'.

  2. In Act III Scene III, what techniques and dramatic devices are used by Shakespeare ...

    After Othello's vengeful words to Iago, Othello [kneels]. Othello kneels first, showing that Iago has more power over him. Iago then has a grand speech in which he 'pledges' his services to Othello "Witness that Iago doth give up/The execution of his wit, hands, heart/To wrong'd Othello's service".

  1. How Does Shakespeare Present Desdemona in Acts One to Four

    me of my lord', showing that she is generally concerned and cares about her husband. We see this even more in the line 'I am not merry, but I do beguile the thing I am by seeming otherwise', as this line is aside to the audience she is really showing

  2. Essay on 'Othello'

    This shows that he once again is disrespectful of Christian values and of Christ. But this line could also be showing that Iago may have a layer to his character, which is unseen by other people. We can see that what Roderigo says is an echo of how Iago speaks, especially about Othello.

  1. How Does Iago Manipulate the other characters in the play To Destroy Othello

    that kind, Will do as if for surety" This means that as well as being jealous he also thinks that Othello has been sleeping with his wife. But he says even if this is just rumour he will continue to plot against Othello, which would suggest that this is probably just an excuse.

  2. 'Hell and Night must bring this Monstrous Birth into the World's Light.' How Successful ...

    an affair to Othello to make him suspicious of Desdemona's every move and word. Like all tragic heroes, Othello has a fatal flaw, which happens to be jealousy, and Iago is going to use this to his advantage. Iago also wants to make Othello promote Iago over Cassio and to do this he intends to ruin Cassio.

  1. How Does Iago Successfully Manipulate Othello in Shakespeare

    using "practices of cunning hell...mixtures powerful o'er the blood, or with some dram conjured to this effect and wrought upon her." This accusation is that Othello used evil practices perhaps with some kind of potion or narcotics in order to make Desdemona love him.

  2. Consider the role of Iago in Act III Scene 3 and show how Shakespeare ...

    If Iago had said that he knows Cassio is honest then Othello would not worry. Iago has now begun his evil plot against Cassio. He carries on his idea of not giving Othello a direct answer, which develops his anger and suspicion, ' Though I am bound to every act

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