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

Othello extract Analysis (3.3.435-476)

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Othello Analysis (3.3.435-476) This extract seems fitting for analysis as it embodies the meaning of tragedy in the Aristotelian sense: the chief emotions induced in the audience from this 40-line exchange are pity and fear which by Aristotle's definition announce a tragedy. The crucial event in this extract - Iago's claims to have seen Cassio "wipe his beard" with the handkerchief - provoke a breakdown in Othello leading to his ceremonial vow to enact his revenge. This sequence stimulates pity in the audience as they witness the "monstrous creation" Iago gleefully describes at the close of Act 1 drive Othello into a rage, shouting "blood, blood, blood". Moreover, losing this composure which the audience had hitherto experienced in Othello evokes fear in the audience with the realisation that Othello has became the animalistic beast Iago derided him as being throughout the whole play. Thomas Rhymer's contemptuous view on Othello is notorious as he questions "so much ado, so much stress, so much passion and repetition about an handkerchief! Why was not this call'd the Tragedy of the Handkerchief?". Rhymer clearly appreciates the importance of the handkerchief in Othello. Preceding this extract the importance of the handkerchief to Desdemona is clear: by Emilia's account, Desdemona at times even treats the handkerchief as a substitute for Othello as she states how "she reserves it evermore about her to kiss and talk to". ...read more.

Middle

However, for the first time in the play, in this scene we experience a total loss in this charisma as he enters a state of rage making Othello's self-critical comments at the trial proleptically fitting. For example, Othello's cry of "damn her, lewd minx! O, damn her, damn her" is evidently inarticulate: the limited verb usage shows how his anger has limited his previously articulate diction. Further, his dismissal of Desdemona as a "lewd minx" is interesting as it echoes the bestial imagery Iago generally uses to mock Othello and so may convey the level of influence Iago now practises over Othello. What is rather more unsettling than the explosion of Othello's angry, incoherent outcries is the way in which he expresses his desire for revenge in this extract with the level of high rhetoric which audiences have come to expect in a calm, rational Othello. This seems to suggest that Othello vows to attain revenge while thinking clearly. T. S. Eliot famously saw Othello as self-dramatising as Othello is capable of shaping tragic experience into a story much like Brutus and Hamlet in Shakespeare's preceding tragedies. This feature is far more emphatically marked in Othello despite Othello's lacking the wry self-awareness and wit of Hamlet which Iago seems to have instead inherited. Although marred slightly by his animalistic outcry of "blood, blood, blood" beforehand, Othello articulately combines classical and cosmic language seamlessly to convey the way in which his desire for revenge is so strong that its reach is infinite and timeless: from the "Hellespont" to "Heaven". ...read more.

Conclusion

Alluding further to the idea of ritual is Othello's acknowledgement that this burden of his is poisonous or "of aspics tongues. In saying this Othello is revealing that he does not want to enact revenge on Desdemona as he still loves her; however he feels bound to by tradition and pride (this is why it is necessary for him to work himself into a rage pleading "arise black vengeance from thy hollow cell"). The reference to asps is interesting as it is different to its usage in other Shakespearian plays - here the reference is to convey the poisonousness of the burden Othello must bear whilst in Antony and Cleopatra an asp allows Cleopatra to escape from the torments of the world. This extract is suitably rich in language to denote its importance to the play. Evoking much pity and fear, the audience experience Othello willingly work himself into a state of frenzy after being falsly being informed by Iago. Othello therefore bids a farewell to the composure and clarity of thought which afforded him his position as a tragic hero and becomes the beast Iago had cruelly derided him as being previously. Othello's language becomes intermittently inarticulate as a result conveying the strength of emotion he experiences from his ritualistic vow for revenge. All the while Iago feigns a sense of companionship with Othello and no aside is necessary to convey to the audience the glee he is obviously experiencing at this step toward the completion of his scheme. ?? ?? ?? ?? Sam Heard ...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. Analyse the style and structure of Othello, Act 3 scene 3, showing what it ...

    Iago's talk of animal's crates tension and feeds Othello's anger-'as hot as monkeys'. What's more, Shakespeare uses linguistic devices when using imagery. First he uses personifications when Iago compares different animals and gives them the human emotion of 'lust' which is used to arouse Othello's anger- 'as prime as goats, as hot as monkeys, /As salt as wolves of pride'.

  2. Iago In Othello - Critical Analysis.

    However, when Iago tells him some fanciful plot in order to capture Desdemona's heart Roderigo forgets Iago's theft and agrees to kill Cassio. Iago's keen intellect is what intrigues the reader most. His ability to say the right things at the right time is what makes him such a successful villain.

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

    The playwright uses these characters to paint a picture of Othello as a black stereotype of his time, labelling Othello as an "alien" in Venice. Firstly, Iago's language is very sexual, racist and contains a lot of animal imagery. People would say he has a filthy mind and very crude and vulgar with his descriptions.

  2. "Damn her, lewd minx O damn her, damn her!" Is Othello's tragic conclusion solely ...

    Indeed, Iago greatly uses the belief and trust that Othello gives him to his own advantage: Othello describes Iago as "a man...of honesty and trust" (I.i.285); this trust plays a major part in Iago's machinations as Othello believes that Iago would not lie to him, and therefore trusts what Iago says.

  1. english othello act 3 scene 3 analysis

    Iago does this by saying "ha I like not that". By doing this he suggests that what Cassio is doing is wrong and dishonest, when he is only talking to Desdemona. Iago does such a good job at persuading Othello into believing that Desdemona is cheating on him.

  2. Character Analysis of Othello

    Othello has a trusting nature in which he gives it all. He put all his trust in Iago during times of war and during Othello's marriage to Desdemona. This wasn't very bright of Othello, even if he wasn't trusting or more corrupt he still wouldn't realize Iago was lying.

  1. Othello for 16th and 21st century audiences

    Just because he's black he's getting all the grief. We are on his side as he is not letting the situation get out of hand and being really mature about the whole thing. During the next scene, Brabantio goes to see the Duke and try to sort everything out as he suspects Othello of 'witchcraft' against his daughter.

  2. Write an essay on the following extract. Your essay should include analysis of language. ...

    The sight of Desdemona lining asleep makes it even more difficult for Othello to commit her murder. Shakespeare makes expert uses of simile to paint a picture of pristine beauty and innocence "whiter skin of hers than snow". This creates an image of a snow covered landscape unspoiled by any signs of life.

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