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

Profile the characters of Iago and Othello, identifying Iago's motivation and Othello's vulnerability. How does Iago use suggestion to bring about the collapse of Othello's character and the destruction of his marriage?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Task: Profile the characters of Iago and Othello, identifying Iago's motivation and Othello's vulnerability. How does Iago use suggestion to bring about the collapse of Othello's character and the destruction of his marriage? "Othello", the story of a great love gone greatly wrong was written by William Shakespeare between 1600 and 1605. It is set principally in Cyprus. The "moor", Othello, rose through the ranks in the Venetian army only to be knocked down by the wicked Iago. He secretly marries Desdemona, the daughter of a Venetian Senator, which is when Iago embarks upon his plan to demolish Othello with the help of his subordinate, Roderigo. With all the love Othello holds for Desdemona, Iago's rumours of an affair between Cassio and Desdemona drive him to the brink of insanity and, at his peak of jealousy; he plans to kill Desdemona and Cassio with Iago's help. However, all does not go according to plan; first Cassio is not killed, then the entire plot is revealed to by Iago's wife, Emilia. At this point Othello realises he has killed Desdemona without just cause. He commits suicide claiming that "his only crime was loving too much". We blame Iago for the deaths that occur at the climax of the play. His use of suggestion breaks down the valiant general, and his production of counterfeit "ocular proof" drives Othello to heartless murder. ...read more.

Middle

Iago encourages his sexual jealousy, a paranoia that both Iago and Othello share. Iago uses a sexual mood to increase this jealousy. He lies about Cassio talking in his sleep of Desdemona, and purposefully uses words like "kissed me hard" and put "his leg over my thigh", which again builds up the anger and jealousy he needs to destroy Othello. In the play Iago relies at times on luck to get him to the next stage of his plan, but without his quick thinking these chances would be wasted. An example of his evil brilliance is when he stages a conversation with Cassio while hiding Othello in the dungeons. He controls the situation and how it will appear to Othello. I ago emphasises the name, "Desdemona", but only whispers Bianca's name. he makes it seem as Cassio is speaking about Desdemona when he talks of Bianca. Iago does not destroy Othello by any physical means; he creates the psychological doubt within Othello which will cause him to self-destruct. When Bianca accuses Cassio of an affair with the owner of the handkerchief Othello gave Desdemona, his suspicions are amplified. The handkerchief that Emilia stole for Iago, becomes the "ocular proof" that convinces Othello that he has betrayed by Desdemona. Without Othello's own flaws and vulnerability this self-destruction would have been impossible for Iago to accomplish. A big weakness that Iago pounces on is Othello's misjudgement of people, which is very evident in the play. ...read more.

Conclusion

What I take from this is that Othello believes that death is the easy way out. Buy his own admission death is the cowardly path, so in some way Othello demeans himself even more in taking his own life. In conclusion, "Othello" is not a play set in a linear fashion, but has many different twists and as it moves towards its climax. Sexual Jealousy is a very important factor for both characters, Iago and Othello, and is Iago's most important motivation in my eyes. Iago uses suggestion to deceive Othello, but this is only successful thanks to Othello's poor judgement in character, which is a big vulnerability in Othello. In the end I think Othello and Iago are both guilty. Othello in my opinion is too rash and quick to judge people; he never directly asks Desdemona if she is having an affair. This is his fatal error. Nonetheless, Othello is not an evil character. He commits murder, not for pleasure but out of love. Iago, on the other hand is clearly an evil person, who seems to take enjoyment from the most atrocious acts. The only time he seems remotely sincere is when he tells us the audience of his plot. Tragically, Iago tortures Othello to the end, by not telling him why he took his spirit, and crushed it in such an efficient way. WORD COUNT: 1284 ?? ?? ?? ?? Suhail Patel Page 1 of 4 ...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. Why Desdemona falls in love with Othello and marries him secretly

    However strong the emotional attitude of prejudices may be in Othello, Love is the most powerful emotion and ironically the emotion that leads to the most vulnerability. Loves of all kinds are tested in the tragedy and ultimately all fail to rectify the horrible situation.

  2. Should we blame Iago for all the events that occur in the play?

    is the most consistent in the play. She does not change (even to her dying moments), symbolising the values of helpless good and wronged innocence throughout the whole play. Although she is spoken of as a girl and is at first thought even by her own father to have innocently

  1. "Desdemona's naivety and goodness are the cause of her own destruction."

    Brabantio mentions "corrupted by spells and medicines" he accuses Othello of witchcraft to win his daughter's love "thou hast practised on her with foul charms". This shows that Brabantio views her as innocent and not capable of following her own feelings.

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

    Him asking Iago to do this really stresses the amount of trust in him. It makes me think that Iago and Desdemona are the two people that he has most trust in, but the why did he not promote Iago instead of Cassio.

  1. DISCUSS THE WAYS IN WHICH IAGO CONTROLS AND MANIPULATES TWO OTHER CHARACTERS IN

    Othello's lieutenant, Cassio is a young and inexperienced soldier (we are told this in the beginning of the play when Cassio is first spoken of), whose high position is much resented by Iago. Truly devoted to Othello, Cassio is extremely ashamed after being implicated in a drunken brawl on Cyprus and losing his place as lieutenant.

  2. Explain and analyse the factors and characters which play a role in the creation ...

    This angers Othello and it plays with his mind and gets him thinking and contemplating the facts of Iago's venomous deception. After a little time Othello explodes mentally and has a fit of anger at Iago and tells him that if what he has told him is not true then:

  1. Iago's' Motivation in Othello.

    I know not if't be true; But I, for mere suspicion in that kind, Will do as if for surety." Roughly translated Iago says that it is rumored that Othello had an affair with Emilia. He's done my office means that Othello took care of Iago's "manly duties" so to speak.

  2. Othello and Iago - Who is the monster?

    He manipulates or uses almost anyone in the play. Obviously, the person at the forefront of this manipulation is Othello. Above anyone else he is the one that Iago seeks revenge on. He abuses Othello's honest and trusting nature by sowing the seeds of doubt in his mind over Desdemona's fidelity.

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