Essays On Othello As A Tragic Hero

Essays On Othello As A Tragic Hero-67
Othello's background and his intertwining of his self-esteem with his military position also makes it difficult for him to engage in a dialogue Desdemona through any language other than violence -- Othello strikes his wife, rather than verbally confronts her with why he expects her of adultery with Cassio.If Othello were able to actually broach the subject with Desdemona and talk to her as an equal, then the tragedy might have a different ending.Othello: Tragic Hero Othello: The Aristotelian tragedy of the Moor of Venice Speak of me as I am; nothing extenuate, Nor set down aught in malice: then must you speak Of one that loved not wisely but too well; Of one not easily jealous, but being wrought Perplex'd in the extreme; of one whose hand, Like the base Indian, threw a pearl away Richer than all his tribe...(V.2).

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He is afraid that his race and age makes him unworthy of her, so he distrusts her -- "she must change for youth,' sneers Iago to Rodrigo (I.3).

Othello wins Desdemona because of his single-minded pursuit of military greatness and honor, and loses her because of the depth of his obsession with masculine honor.

However, although Othello has been able to steel his soul to racism, he is unable to see beyond the fraud perpetrated by Iago upon his psyche.

To compound the tragedy, Othello's beloved "pearl" Desdemona gives up her family for the love of Othello, casting away the prejudice in which she has been reared.

This paradox gives the tragedy of "Othello" its moral complexity, its instructive power, and its ability to inspire pity and terror.

Most individuals have felt jealousy and suffered prejudice, in one form or another, but Othello's greatness makes him suffer on an epic scale in a way that instructs the viewer that even greatness does not make one immune to cruelty in love.Rather, Othello's unique greatness as a general, his hypersensitivity to honor and fear of being judged harshly and cast aside because of his race causes him to mistrust Desdemona, even though such dignity kept him strong through war and slavery.Othello's lack of knowledge of marital life and greater age than Desdemona is due to the fact that he nobly and greatly served his nation at war, but also makes him unable to trust her more than Iago."Even now, now, very now, an old black ram/Is topping your white ewe" (I.1).This shows the racism that Othello has had to overcome his entire life and makes 'the Moor' (as he is called) hypersensitive to insults.The ability to overcome racism means that Othello's psychological uniqueness is stressed, and his greatness which sets him apart from others and makes him desirable in a way that transcends race.His greatness is so overpowering that the leaders of Venice joke that they would be wooed by his stories, even if they are initially predisposed to believe Desdemona's father."Tragedy, then, is an imitation of an action that is serious, complete, and of a certain magnitude; in language embellished with each kind of artistic ornament, the several kinds being found in separate parts of the play; in the form of action, not of narrative; through pity and fear effecting the proper purgation of these emotions" (I. Tragedy commands the viewer's attention because of its seriousness and the serious actions spawned as a consequence of what transpires.The elevated language and tone the playwright uses to treat a compelling subject provokes profound emotions in the hearts of viewers.The legacy of racism he has overcome is also evident in Othello's stories, with which he wooed Desdemona.They are stories of being sold into slavery as well as of fantastic sights, travels, and battles.


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