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Othello Analyzing A Passage in Act I Scene I

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Introduction

How does Shakespeare use language to make the contrasts in characters clear? What does this extract reveal about the characters of Othello and Brabantio? 8-10 minutes In this commentary, I will focus on Shakespeare?s use of language and its effects on revealing each character?s uniqueness in one of his most successful plays, Othello. This extract is a conversation between Brabantio and Othello regarding Brabantio?s skepticism of Desdemonda falling in love with Othello. He approaches Othello with his guards after hearing from Iago regarding this matter; whom at the same time is also attempting to manipulate Othello into fighting Brabantio. The conversation in scene two of act one between Othello and Brabantio reveals distinct mannerisms of both characters- prior to the lead-up of this scene, Brabantio calls Othello a ?thief? and draws his sword in attempt to attack Othello. Othello is able to remain calm and prevent the confrontation from intensifying despite facing Brabantio?s aggressive demeanor. This shows to the readers that despite Othello? status as a fearless warrior, he will only shed blood when it is necessary, and he wouldn?t instigate violent situations. ...read more.

Middle

him into thinking that Othello?s ?drugs and minerals? which he thinks Othello has used, is the only probable justification of Desdmona falling in love with Othello. The stubbornness of Brabantio is then in display, as he is clearly bought into his own story of Othello?s use of black magic, and calls fo r his guards to arrest Othello- he also tells them that if Othello resists, they could ?subdue him at his peril?, which demonstrates his heedless personality. It seems that he takes action without second thoughts or any deep considerations, and acts instantly upon his emotions. Othello is again able to withstand Brabantio?s provocative words, and claims that ?were it my cue to fight, I should have known it Without a prompter?. Here it demonstrates Othello?s pride in his combat. It also seems as if Othello is completely unfazed by the circumstances that he is facing; as he again, calmly prevents a violent confrontation and at the same time still responds to Brabantio?s accusations. Othello?s leadership is unquestionably evident here, as he is able to command both Branbtio?s men and his men at the same time. ...read more.

Conclusion

A comparison we see is the amount of dialogue each character says. Othello?s words weigh of wisdom and depth, hence he is able to speak less but still deliver his intended meanings, with authority. Brabantio is unable to do so, as he feels the need to repeat his words with no further emphasis, which demonstrates his inner insecurities of himself- for instance, he said in a total of three times of how Othello has cast spells to Desdemona, each time in attempt to reassure himself of his own thoughts. In conclusion, the importance of this passage is that it shows us how easily Brabantio is in being manipulated, whilst showing the readers that Othello is a skillful veteran whom garners respect from others, allowing him to control problematic situations. In a situation where Othello could have been in combat, he wisely avoids it by using his ability as a persuasive speaker to calm Brabantio down without further infuriating him. This extract foreshadows to the audience that Othello would perhaps be very difficult to manipulate in comparison to those whom Iago has already manipulated, which outlines an enthralling plot- can Iago ultimately destroy Othello, or will Othello come to the realization of Iago?s evil schemes? ...read more.

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