Books and Movies Reviews

The Detrimental Character Iago in

In the drama "Othello", there is no character in all of Shakespeare’s plays so full of deceitful power and poison as Iago.He is envious of Michael Cassio and suspects that Othello has wronged his honor; but his malignancy is all out of proportion even to his alleged motives, through which he shows his ambivalence of nature. Allowing this ;green-eyed; monster, envy, and jealousy, to get the best of him, will ultimately lead to his downfall. During most of the Play, the audience finds itself constantly trying to find a motive for Iago;s actions but finds none that can justify him deceiving Othello. Despite Iago;s recognizing that, indeed, the Moor; ;is of a free and open nature;; (1.3.381), he still does despise him. Iago has to be examined closer to discover his motives: of course, he is jealous of Cassio;s appointment as Othello;s lieutenant, and this jealousy is an ultimate irony in itself as he later mocks Othello for his own jealousy, having given in to the ;green-eyed monster;. There are also Iago;s blatant racial slurs and his obvious hatred towards Othello, as well as his paranoia regarding the supposed infidelity of his wife, ;And it is thought abroad that;twixt my sheets he;s [Othello;s] done my office; (1.3.369). However, the latter excuse may seem less reasonable, considering that Iago also utters later that he believes that Cassio has also slept with his wife. “O, Beware, my lord, of jealousy! It is the green-eyed monster (3.3.195-96)…”If a monster with green eyes were coming at an individual, what would one do? The answer of course, depends on the circumstances of that particular person. Would one permit the green-eyed monster to conquer his or her own mind, and control his or her every move? In this case the green-eyed monster would indeed be jealousy. Iago, for example, was prejudice towards the African American, Ot…


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