Othello

The Tragedy of Othello- The Moor of Venice blank verse is primarily used, shifts occurIambic (defeat) to trochaic (listen)pentameter to tetrameterpoetry to prose
motifs used light and darkmagic/sorceryevil/DevilBestiality/Animal imagery
Allusions biblical, Greek and Roman Mythology
Themes Appearance v RealityHonesty (multiple definitions; women=faithfulness, chastity)Jealousy/Envy/Pridemajor flaw=othernessraceorder v chaos
Other elements Dynamic character (Othello) v Static (Iago)Tragic Hero =Tragic flawno subplot
History of Moors in 711 comes from the Mauri -old tribe in present day Morocco in N. Africa, Kingdom = Mauritaniabecame Muslims in early Islamic historythe Moors conquered Spain, ruling Spain, Portugal, and N. Africa for the next 700 years
Driven out by a coalition of Christian Kings, Kingdom of Granada thrived for another 300 yrsGranada capitulated Isabella and Ferdinand’s marriage united kingdoms
1502 all remaining Muslims are exiled/converted(moriscos) expelled moriscos went several direction: Algiers, Morocco & Tunisiaorpassed as Gypsiesorbecame pirates
1604-14 remaining Moors were systematically hunted down and expelled throughout Spain
1st known performance of Othello 1604helps explain Othello’s presence in Italy to develop the “otherness” of O as only black mansets up the contrasts of age and status between O and Desdemonasignificant to remember that Othello is the TRAGIC HERO, not villian
Moor n. member of the mixed Berber and Arab race of Moroccoin Renaissance drama, symbolized something other than human-often devilishin the play, dramatic tension is created by O’s otherness
Othello the term “Moor” for a Jacobean audiencemay have signified O’s otherness
3 Moors in Shakespeare’s plays Princes of Morocco in THE MERCHANT OF VENICE, hopes to marry PortiaAaron the Moor in Titus Andromious Othello
venetian leader who promises Desdemona’s father the chance to invoke the “bloody book of law” for stealing her away duke
“O now, forever farewell the tranquil mind…” Othello
“To suckle fools and chronicle small beer.” Iago
“But he that filches from my good name robs me…makes me poor indeed” Iago
“Is no this man jealous?” Emilia
What are crusadoes money
Setting of the play, in beg In Venice, Italy then the rest in Cyprus
How does Iago believe that ppl are promoted w/i the ranks? What’s his reaction to the commentary? “Preferment goes by letter and affection,” personal preference over merit. nepotism-not by serviceInitially the audience believes his allegationsCassio mere bean counter, arithmetician and only knows war from books, unlike Iago who’s lead successful fights for the venetian army
Nature of relationship between Roderigo and Iago. What does Iago say to manipulate the latter Iago has total control over the latter. Iago takes his money in return for Desdemona’s love
Two secret acts to begin the play Elopement and the plot between Iago and Roderigo
Ironic about Iago and Othello’s convo Iago warns Othello about Barbantio, he was the only that told Rogerigo to wake Barbantio
Conflict between Othello and Barbantio, what do we learn about their characters Othello turns out to be the opposite of what Iago made him out to seem. He’s eloquent in speech and demeanor and calm. He’s smart; professional. He asks for a mediator and doesn’t want blood shed. Barbantio on the other hand is abrasive and quick to judge.
Two diff attitudes towards Othello respect and admiration for work in military v racist, moor
Iago’s plan make Othello suspect that Desdemona is having an affair with Cassio
Who first arrives to Cyprus Cassio
Cassio’s attitude about the safety of Othello Confident. “He is not yet arrived…here.” “His bark is stoutly timbered…cure.”
Cassio’s description of Des “Divine Desdemona.” the storm moves out of her way for safe passage
Purpose of Iago’s aside keep the audience up to date and let them know the scene is part of the plot.
Act 2 Sc 3, what plan is Iago working on? Getting Cassio drunk and having Rod provoke Cassio into fighting
Effect of brawl Cassio’s reputation is ruinedMontano is stabbedconvince Cassio to use Des to go between Othello and him as he did for her and Othello
Two things Iago has left to do Convince Othello that Iago has reason to suspect infidelity of Des with CassioGet Emilia close to Des
Iago’s treatment of Rod now that Cassio is dismissed as lieutenant very short w himsnides him to be patient.
Convo between Iago, Emilia, and Des about women “bells in your parlors” have guests, act like bells”wildcats in your kitchens” caddy to servants”saints in your injuries” always injured, never to blame”devils being offended” very defensive”players in huswifery” play at house, Queen, all have”huswives in your beds” hussies, use sex(give/resist) If she be fair(pretty) and wise(smart), fairness & wit all women use sex to get what she wantsBeauty of all, all bad, all same
Who is Emilia? Wife of Iago and lady in waiting for Des
Arrangements Emilia makes for Cassio to arrange a meeting w Des w/o Othello
How does Em reassure Cassio? Des is already urging O to reinstate him, O still cares for him
Irony in Em’s comments at the beg of Act 3 Sc 3 “I warrant it grieves my husband…were his” It is his faultIntent on his deception/plot happening that he plays a huge part in its execution
What does Des promise Cassio? he will soon be as close to O as he was before
How Iago plants the 1st seeds of jealousy in Othello When Cassio leaves as O enters, Iago points out how suspicious his leave was. guiltylike
Othello agrees to do ____for Des look into Cassio being reinstated b/c he’ll do anything for her
What else does Iago do when Des leaves? talks about Cassio’s loyalty and honesty, tells O not to be jealous, but not why
Othello’s response to the jealousy comments why should he be jealous
Iago’s response Des and Cass are closer than they appear and tells him his theories of affair mentions the “green-eyed monster”
purpose of Iago’s lines “I see this hath a little dashed your spirits,” and “I do see you are moved?” although O doesn’t feel this, Iago is making O think that he should feel this way
O’s thoughts tells Iago to observe Des, believes Iago knows more than he’s telling, and begins to doubt himself for not picking this upalso let Des fend for herself if Iago is right OTHERNESS plays a huge part in this, O is both black and isn’t used to Venetian ways, so he’s easily manipulated by Iago who says “trust me, I know their ways”
What does Emilia do for Iago? Steal Des’s handkerchief w/ strawberries so Iago will love her forever
Plan to plant it as evidence of Des and Cassio’s affair
Attitude of Othello when he sees Iago Wish he’s never heard it, b/c it wouldn’t have to be trueangry, mad, realizes lack of evidence, “he hath led him amiss”
how does O threaten Iago? Iago’s response strangling him, demands proofIago tells O of the handkerchief in Cassio’s roomand Cassio crying out in his sleep about Des and cursing O
Command from O to Iago Kill Cassio, and promotes Iago to lieutenant CLIMAX
why does O demand Des to present handkerchief 1st gift, incredibly important, looks really bad that she can’t produce it
dramatic irony in convo between em and des des talks about losing the handkerchief, em knows she stole item and des talk about O being jealous “Is he? I don’t know. “
import info revealed in convo between Cassio and Bianca at end of act 3 sc 4 He gave her the handkerchief and wants her to copy the embroidering
importance of handkerchief made for O’s mom by an egyptian. woven w silk made from blessed worms and thought to be enchanted. according to the egyptian, if O’s mom lost or gave it away, O’s father would leave her. O’s mom gave it to him on her death bed and told him to give it to the woman he wanted to marry.
Ex of how Iago uses ethos to persuade O in act 3 setting it up to look like CASSIO and Iago are discussing des, when they’re actually discussing about Bianca.
Ex of how Iago uses pathos to persuade O in act 3 by appealing to O’s emotions, telling him that Cassio dreampt of Des
Symbolism of O fainting from seizure fall from grace no longer in controlkill des
Iago’s more direct approach in act 4 tells O how to kill des, doesn’t just allude to her death
who is Lodovico? what’s his presence serve for? Cousin of Des. to show the diff (change) in O, who slaps his wife and is rude. Lodo has to step in. Reminder there are rules, outside world
Emilia’s characterization of O’s behavior in accordance to her attitude towards men and marriage he is abused by jealousy, lashing at Des, easily manipulated by emotionswants to hang him
New info about Rod, and how he is further manipulated by Iago Since Iago didn’t give the jewels to Des, Rod threatens to demand them back from Des(who doesn’t know about them)Iago explains that O is taking Des to Mauritania, and to stop him Rod has to kill Cassio
Ex of foreshadowing in final scene of act 4 Des talks about what sheets(wedding sheets) she wants to wrapped in when she dies->her deathwillow song->her deathwillow tree->sad
how is Em a foil to Des in discussion of fidelity? Em believes that women have the right to experience pleasure as much as men do. Man’s job is to keep him women in check. women cheat b/c the man is either abusive or not doing wellreps the changing views of womenuse sex to make him king, cuckholdDes is the perfect wife
act5 c 1, Iago’s thoughts only honest w audience, feels he can manipulate the outcome, win-win unless they figure about the plotno regretsRod is the only one who have to die
Who wounds whom in the battle Cassio stabs Rod, who wounds no one, and Iago stabs Rod
What does O credit Iago with? he is honest, has wronged a right, for killing Cassio who isn’t deadaccredits him w teaching O to distinguish between friend and foe and change words to actions
How does Iago manipulate the sit even further? Blames Bianca, who’s just a *****, takes focus from Iago to B and further discredits Cassio
“this is the night/that either makes me or fordoes me quite.” let the audience know that what happens next is unknow to Iago
O’s state of mind before he kills Des intent on extinguishing Des’s light/life. resigned to do this, she’ll betray more men. speech is returned to eloquence. sense of control
Des’s response to o she blames herself
similarity between Em and Des both killed by Iago (em-directly and Des-indirectly), and husbands.
Info we learn from Gratiano Barbantio died from grief
Irony in Iago’s statement there is none, for the first time in the play Iago refuses to speak.
Function of Darkness in scene putting out Des’s light
imagery in O’s final speech “threw pearl away” throws Des-pearl away due to Iagolang to “Otherness” mentions arabian treeswant to be remembered for…returns to eloquence

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