Examine the friendship between Othello and Iago and how it links to the downfall of Othello

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Examine the friendship between Othello and Iago and how it links to the downfall of Othello

Othello and Iago are one of the most distinctive protagonist and antagonist in all of Shakespeare’s plays as they both depict the conventional stereotype of good against evil, Othello clearly symbolises the ‘good’ character as he is represented as both moral and virtuous, on the other hand Iago’s persona characterises the wicked and immoral which he rebelliously possesses. Iago’s sham friendship is not revealed until the very end of the play, he disguises himself as a close partner of Othello as he is acknowledged as ‘honest Iago’ which the audience knows to be deceitful view as he resembles pure and utter evil. Nonetheless they have been associates for a few years; however Iago’s representation is suddenly changed once Othello is promoted to being general of the Venetian society. Iago’s immoral behaviour doesn’t seem to waver at all in the play, in the play we initially learn of his act of vengeance which he wishes to commit and he unquestionably commits it right through to the end of the play. Iago in some respect is without a doubt the provocateur of all aspects evil in the play, he is to a great extent the stimulant of all immorality. In comparison to Othello, his behaviour in due course vastly changes as his good character is overcome by evil, as the play goes on we are aware that ‘honest Iago’ is the sinister starting point behind the downfall of Othello. The on-going bond between these two soon becomes destructive as Iago’s motive soon takes a turn for the worse as his menacing scheme jeopardises the lives of both their loved ones, Amelia and Desdemona.

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Shakespeare’s Othello was first performed by the King’s Men at the court of King James during the Jacobean era (November 1, 1604). The play was written in the course of Shakespeare’s great tragic era, during this time he also had composed other famous plays, some of the likes of; Hamlet (1600), King Lear (1604-5) as well as the renowned Macbeth (1606). The contextual background of Othello is set in the later fragment of the sixteenth century, during the wars between Turkey and Venice. The plot of Othello originated from Giraldi Cinthio’s ‘Gli Hecatommithi’, the focal theme was based on mixed-raced ...

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