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In Othello, Shakespeare creates characters who reinforce social stereotypes and others who abandon more traditional roles. Discuss.

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Introduction

In Othello, Shakespeare creates characters who reinforce social stereotypes and others who abandon more traditional roles. Discuss. In this essay I aim to discuss the way Shakespeare creates characters who reinforce social stereotypes and others who abandon more traditional roles and how it helps his play by looking at the language form and structure. In Shakespeare's time there were different standings in class, race and in gender, men were above women and whites were above blacks a character that reinforces this stereotype of the time is the character of Brabantio, he is the father of Desdemona who is the object of Othello's heart. Othello is black and Desdemona is white, these two being together let alone married would've been a great shock to audiences in Shakespeare's time, so Shakespeare needed a character to represent the way most people think and this was Brabantio. An example of Branbantio as being stereotypical is when he says where hast thou stowed my daughter? Damned as though art, though hast enchanted her. ...read more.

Middle

audience but other than the fact that it tells you this play is set in Venice, nearly all of the characters can be directly linked to the English lifestyle at the time. On numerous occasions Brabantio makes numerous comments showing his stereotypical views on his daughter and shows that he thinks he owns her by objectifying her, a quote that supports this idea is "Ay to me, she is abused, stolen from me and corrupted" when he says this you can see he sees his daughter as his own and only thinks she should do what he thinks she should. A character that is not stereotypical and abandons their own typical role in this play is Desdemona she does this by disobeying her father and society by marrying a black man who is seen as a peasant in her fathers eyes, the time this play was shown daughters and women alike were controlled by men, so the disobedience of Desdemona would surprise the audience and is also the reason that Brabantio thinks that Othello has poisoned her with magic but as Othello denies using magic to win ...read more.

Conclusion

a black man living a white orientated world and to get to his standing and stature as one of the heads of the Venetian army's as the Venetian empire at this time had much power behind it with strongholds as Venice and Verona this shows how much of a struggle it was to get there and makes it more surprising, from being a slave sold from Africa to a warrior and being respected for his talent and not prejudged due to his skin colour. In his speech he tells us that he has been through many a hardships of war and slavery telling us he has had a hard life and the use of language tells that he is going to go through more hardships but with Desdemona we can see this when he says "but that I love the gentle Desdemona, I would not my unhoused free condition" he is saying her that he would give up his freedom from slavery to stay with her, this is an idealised romantic notion which is not practical which in turn shows us that it will end in tragedy. ...read more.

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