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Three Plays-One Role.

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Brian Holcombe Mrs. Beverly Simpson English 1102 9 December 2003 Three Plays-One Role Oftentimes, masters of the pen and paper write a work of literature with a specific intention as to how the characters will be developed and how they will interact with one another. This remains true in Shakespeare's Othello, Henrik Isben's A Doll House, and Susan Glaspell's Trifles. Except, in these three plays, there is one defining characteristic shines through all the asides and soliloquies. That characteristic is that the women in these three plays all maintain specific roles that are not too inherently different from each other. Their abilities are underestimated by their fellow characters and, in turn, the reader also. The defining elements of their characters are not fully displayed like those of their male counterparts. Instead, the women must reveal their true selves through a series of acts and conversations. Through analyzing each significant female character in the three plays, it will become apparent as to what sort of role they play in their respective play. In The Tragedy of Othello, the Moor of Venice, Shakespeare creates the lead female character of Desdemona as versatile and multi-faceted. ...read more.


Her determination boldly shines through with dignity when she must face the incomprehensible jealousy of her husband Othello. Desdemona proves to be a truly unique character as she must reveal her own determination and validity as a female to her fellow characters and the reader alike. While reading this play, the reader must keep in mind that Shakespeare created Desdemona as a character who would appear two opposite lights throughout the course of the play. The previous paragraph outlined the loving, concerned wife. This paragraph shall detail how she appears to be much more well-rounded and plausible than she is given credit for. On the surface, she appears to be simply a young fool hopelessly in love and driven by a sexual crave. But, when thoroughly observed, it becomes obvious that she is not just a stereotypical weak and submissive character who has no deeper level of meaning. Rather, she appears to be a strong and assertive woman who often takes charge of the situation in which she is involved. This is obvious in the following quote in which she asserts her strong will onto her father: "My noble father, / I do perceive here a divided duty" (iii.179-180). ...read more.


She must change with the progression of the story so as to make Othello feel as though he is indeed loved and truly needed by Desdemona. As the story progresses, this trait changes so that she can prove to Othello that she is not so independent that she has no need for him. This act somewhat discredits her existence as a strong, independent character, but nevertheless, she remains a truly powerful female character. Finally, it appears at the end of the play that Desdemona is far too much ahead of her time. It seems as though she is aware of her imminent death and prepares herself for it. Aware of her looming death, she asks for her wedding sheets to be put on her bed and to be buried in these sheets. Becoming a martyr for her marriage, Desdemona symbolically dies upon the wedding sheets that suffocated the life from her both literally and figuratively speaking. Even in her death, she remains a beacon for the reader to follow so that a resolution will appear. In her death, Desdemona forgives Othello but maintains her "guiltless" attitude, thus making it easier for the audience to forgive Othello for all his actions throughout the play. Holcombe 1 ...read more.

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