Option C: Describe and discuss the portrayal of any aspect of human nature Othello by William Shakespeare

Essay by Jimmy99 April 2004

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In the tragedy Othello, William Shakespeare portrays the sinister aspects of human nature to encourage the audience to view the characters in comparison to themselves, coming to a realisation that as human beings we all inflict more vulnerability on others than we would like to admit. During the drama the audience finds itself thoroughly immersed in concepts and the consequences of human nature, conceptions such as the emotional attitudes of racism, sexism, love, hate, jealously, pride, and deception. The Shakespearean tragedy of Othello was written in a time of great racial tensions in England. According to Eldred Jones, in 1600 just three years before Othello was written, Queen Elizabeth proclaimed an Edict for the Transportation of all "negars and blackmoores" out of the country ("Othello- An Interpretation" Critical Essays 39 ). It was in this atmosphere that Shakespeare began the masterpiece of Othello, a drama about a noble black Moorish general, Othello, who falls in love with and marries, Desdemona, a young white daughter of a senator.

Othello's colour inevitably causes vulnerability, conflict and isolation from the rest of the Venetian society. It is this inevitability that ironically portrays human nature at its darkest. The drama Othello shows, through several happenings of great tragedy, how human nature can inflict on others vulnerability, suffering and ultimately destruction - appallingly, whether in situations of personal benefit or not. Othello is the tragedy of human nature...

The relationships in the play are used to demonstrate the vulnerability of humans when involved personally with other people. Illustrating how humans are susceptible are to deception, yet innately competent of deception themselves. The military values which Shakespeare explores in Othello - such as honesty, trust and loyalty which are supposed to exist between soldiers - even in the heat of battle - allow Iago to...