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How does Shakespeare use language and sentence structure to convey Othello's state of mind?

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Othello Coursework essay plan Alison Miles Question: How does Shakespeare use language and sentence structure to convey Othello's state of mind? Iago's manipulative ways has Othello convinced that Desdemona has deceived him. "Villain be sure thou prove my love a whore." Here Othello speaks violently, using derogatory language to criticize his wife's actions. This shows his erratic state of mind. This quote also contains irony as for a brief moment, Othello suspects Iago to be a villain. This is ironic because Othello has always said Iago is trustworthy, but for a moment, he reveals his true nature without realizing it. Throughout the act Othello becomes very confused by his wife's actions and starts to loose trust in her. "I think my wife be honest and think she is not." Here Othello is showing confusion. Shakespeare shows this by using syntax. Because the sentence in unnatural it portrays the image that Othello's mind is also unnatural. By using the word 'think' he is showing that he is not sure what to believe. ...read more.


In the middle of the scene, Othello is still unsure about whether Desdemona is guilty and shows that his mind is in conflict. He was portrayed as a sure and certain character, but now is unsure of himself. "Now do I see 'tis true." Syntax suggests Othello is asking a question. Othello seems to be in doubt and although on the outside he is convinced of Desdemona's guilt, in his head he is unsure and still remembers her as his love. Othello believes what he is doing is right and for it he will go to heaven. "All my fond love thus do I blow to heaven." This shows that he feels that by killing Desdemona, he is ridding the world of an evil and he is serving God. Again this shows that he has started to grow unstable in his mind and slightly fanatical. His jealousy has driven him mad. He is seeking revenge. He has a desire to see Desdemona suffering. "Oh, blood, Iago, blood!" ...read more.


Othello's attitude towards Cassio changed dramatically. "Within these three days let me hear that Cassio's not alive." This long sentence is unbroken by commas, which shows Othello saying his words slowly, and calmly without outward anger. It also shows how, before, Othello believed him innocent but now believes the accusations. The lack of emotion shows how heartless and broken Othello has become. It also shows lack of conscience, which shows that Othello is turning into a psychopath. Othello realizes how he has changed and will not give in. "Like to the Pontic Sea, whose icy current and compulsive course ne'er feels retiring ebb, but keeps due on." Othello is saying that he is like the sea that is cold. Othello confirming his new bitterness shows that he knows that he is being destroyed and hurt. He also says that he is to keep going on, which now shows that there is no confliction left inside him and he has his heart set on revenge, and nothing will stop him. Othello has accepted Iago's accusations. "Farewell the tranquil mind; farewell content." Othello believes life is at its end, the repetition portrays he is convinced and it also implies and image of his distraught. ...read more.

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