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

Iago's Homosexuality is the key to understanding Shakespeare's characterisation

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Iago's Homosexuality is the key to understanding Shakespeare's characterisation. Homosexuality doesn't really occur in renaissance drama, particularly tragedies. So it's quite surprising that as an audience we are left to wonder if Iago is infact gay. What can be confirmed is that Iago's sexuality is extremely twisted. He clearly shows negative feelings towards his wife and she could be seen as just a helper in his plans, or even a cover up to his true sexuality. " You rise play, and go to bed to work.", he is completely degrading women. Emilia replies, " You shall not write my praise." Shakespeare set's up their rocky relationship from the first exchange we see between them. ...read more.

Middle

It might not be that he's exactly gay, just not really into women either. Iago could be played as vein and love himself as he is completely selfish. Shakespeare has presented in Iago a character whose only motive is evil for it's own sake. Do you think either of these views encapsulates Iago and his motives? There are a number of images of poisoning, which we come to associate with Iago and his methods of manipulation. In act 1 scene 1 the ensign says that he wants to " Poison his delight" referring to Brabantio. In the following act we learn that Iago's jealousy of the moor is so strong that it " Doth like a poisonous mineral gnaw my inwards." ...read more.

Conclusion

At times Iago's schemes seem to work unrealistically well which you could say proves this idea of magic and potions. The speed that he works at as well shows his power. As soon as everyone arrives in Cypress Iago puts his plans in effect. At times Iago's schemes seem to work unrealistically well which you could say proves this idea of magic and potions. The speed that he works at as well shows his power. As soon as everyone arrives in Cypress Iago puts his plans in effect. At times Iago's schemes seem to work unrealistically well which you could say proves this idea of magic and potions. The speed that he works at as well shows his power. As soon as everyone arrives in Cypress Iago puts his plans in effect. ...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

Here's what a star student thought of this essay

3 star(s)

Response to the question

Although the first task is ridiculous, this essay engages with the question quite well. It is key to note that there are two questions being set here! I would've liked to have seen some links to a contemporary audience shunning ...

Read full review

Response to the question

Although the first task is ridiculous, this essay engages with the question quite well. It is key to note that there are two questions being set here! I would've liked to have seen some links to a contemporary audience shunning homosexuality, thus linking this to their hatred of Iago's demonic qualities and his manipulation over Othello. There are some brash assumptions made with the homosexuality question. The section regarding motives also engages well with the task, exploring the poison imagery well.

Level of analysis

The analysis in this essay is sound, but I would've liked to seen more close analysis of language and imagery techniques. I did like how this essay shows potential in addressing Shakespeare's constructs, rather than writing as if the characters dictate their actions. However, this is only done a few times, whereas it should be done throughout! There is little awareness of the audience response or dramatic effect when analysing quotes. If I were doing this essay, I would be confident with my argument, suggesting Iago's homosexuality is used by Shakespeare to make the audience hate him further. Being bold with an argument, if evidence is there, rather than sitting on the fence will gain credit! I like how the essay picks up on Iago's use of poison imagery, however there is little discussion of what effect it has. There is no use picking out a good point if it's not fully elaborate upon.

Quality of writing

The essay has a clear introduction, but is lacking a solid conclusion. The last paragraph is duplicated which in my opinion shows a lack of effort to proof read! The language used is overly colloquial at times "we are left to wonder if Iago is in fact gay" which should be avoided. I would have liked to have seen "the audience" used in place of "we" but other than that spelling, punctuation and grammar are fine.


Did you find this review helpful? Join our team of reviewers and help other students learn

Reviewed by groat 20/02/2012

Read less
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. Othello has been called a ‘domestic tragedy’. What part do the three women play ...

    Many modern women could easily relate to Emilia. Portraying her mature, worldly personality would be very effective with a modern audience. It would also be important to show her loyalty, especially to Iago. It is clear that Emilia loves Iago as she stands by him throughout the play, until she discovers the real truth about him.

  2. How and why does Othello's language change over the course of the Play?

    propels his actions; he is also thinking that his actions are in a just cause; or he could be using it in a legal sense as the accusation brought against Desdemona in a court. Either way Othello invents himself as the personification of justice, partly because he cannot bear to face up directly to what he thinks Desdemona has done.

  1. How Does Shakespeare Present The Theme Of The Outsider In Othello(TM) Act 1?

    "This counter-caster, he, in good time, must his lieutenant be, and I - God bless the mark! - his Moorship's ancient." This racial slur is spoken by Iago and refuses to call Othello by his birth name but dubs him with vile insults of racial influence.

  2. In the opinion of F.R. Leavis, “Iago’s power is that he represents something that ...

    If this is so, it is certainly consistent if not proven by the text, as when Othello does come under Iago's wing there are disturbing changes in his manner and personality that mirror Iago's own psyche. His language gets progressively cruel and animalistic, which is a characteristic already highly notable

  1. "Othello and Desdemona's marriage doesn't stand a chance." Discuss.

    She shows no signs of fear, and was very blunt. From her attitude it is clear that she is very much in love with Othello and their bond is very strong, which did not break when tested against Brabantio's emotional blackmail.

  2. How Shakespeare creates chaos in Othello's mind

    interjections show this, for Othello's short and perhaps meaningless replies suggest that his mind is drifting elsewhere, and his mentality is slowly edging away from calmness. Soon after, Othello is left on stage alone where he conveys his feelings to the audience.

  1. "The motive hunting of a motiveless malignity" (Coleridge). Is this a fair assessment of ...

    A fig! 'Tis in ourselves that we are thus or thus. Our bodies are our gardens, to the which our wills are gardeners. (Act I, Scene III, Line 315) Even though Iago acts so sadistically to characters such as Othello, he does still recognise goodness and good qualities in other people.

  2. How was Othello(TM)s and Desdemona(TM)s relationship doomed from the start?

    They have refused to follow Venice's controlled system and suggest that they are outcastes. Moving on, Iago is considered a threat to Othello and Desdemona's relationship and his determination to cause problems for them is relentless. We know this because Shakespeare allows Iago to speak to the audience in his

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