Who is to blame for the tragedy of Othello?

Authors Avatar

Who is to blame for the tragedy of Othello?

In the play, Othello, there are many people that can be blamed for all the death and tragedy that happened, such as Iago as he caused all the lies to start and created a conspiracy himself. However, I also think that all the characters in some way contributed to all the tragedy and they all played some part in fuelling the lies.

The character Othello helped in many ways to cause all the tragedy and a lot of blame could be placed on him, as not only was it him that murdered people but he allowed himself to be led astray by Iago. He let himself be blinded by his emotions and let them run him, first with his love for Desdemona and secondly by his anger for being betrayed or wronged in some way. An example of this is when he says “it is too much of joy”, this shows us that he can’t keep his emotions in check and lets them affect quite greatly how he acts, this is shown throughout the play by the actions Othello takes. He also doesn’t handle situations that he’s in very well or at least not in the right way. Instead of trying to talk, he just lashes out and doesn’t let anyone explain what’s happening, he shows this quality when he learns that Desdemona is supposedly cheating on him he just lashes out and “he strikes her”, as the stage direction says. This shows how much he lets his emotions take over him and make him do things and think things that aren’t rational, this also shows how he could be to blame as if he didn’t act so rashly then he could of found out the truth and not caused so much pain and death. Othello also trusts Iago more than he trusts Desdemona, this is a really bad thing for him to think as it allows him to be tricked by Iago and to believe all the lies he is fed are true and causes him in the end to kill Desdemona. This is shown when he says “Iago is most honest”. So he believes that Iago always tells the truth, as that’s what Iago wants him to believe. His obsessive love for Desdemona is as well something that could leave him as the one to blame, as by being so deeply in love with her, he leaves himself open to be hurt and to be abused, because people know exactly how to get to him. His obsessive love is shown when he says “You must speak of one that lov’d not wisely but too well”, this quote also shows how much he thinks of love and how highly he thinks of it. Lastly, Othello could be to blame as he takes simple, basic mistakes and twists them into something that matters and something that sounds much worse. So the simple things people did, like Desdemona not immediately wanting to look for the hankie, he blew majorly out of proportion and this then caused him to overreact with his emotions. This is shown when he says “I am most unhappy at the loss of it”, when referring to the loss of the hankie.

Join now!

Iago was largely to blame for all the tragedy, possibly the most, as he was the character that caused people to be deceived and was shown as truly a conniving person. Firstly, Iago kills Emilia and Roderigo and he attempts to kill Cassio too, so he is the sole reason that all the tragedy happens, if he hadn’t of stabbed them and caused all the deceit then people wouldn’t have died. A quote that shows him being a murderer is when the stage directions say “Iago stabs Emilia from behind and exit”, showing him being responsible for more tragedy than ...

This is a preview of the whole essay