Speech on the themes and components of Shakespeare's "Othello".

Essay by iceemelon July 2007

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Othello, as we know is the “tragic Hero” and it is at this point of the play that we understand the extent in which his “tragic flaw” has been manipulated into this tortured emotional state. It is believed that Othello’s flaw is his excessive pride also known as Hubris.

The repetition in the opening line “It is the cause, it is the cause” can emphasize two different points. Either that Othello is certain in his plans to murder Desdemona and is attempting to add weight and dignity to his cause OR that he is initially still unsure of his motives and is struggling to persuade himself to commit the act. Either way, both interpretations highlight the twisted mindset Othello is in. The use of repetition appears again in the line “One more, one more!” which intensifies Othello’s greedy passion and attraction towards Desdemona. It establishes the conflict between Othello’s fierce love yet vengeful hatred for Desdemona.

Othello appears to describe all abstract matters and emotions such as love, through the comparison of tangible objects of the physical world. Hence, the use of symbolism, similes and metaphors become quite frequent. For example, Othello explores the irreversibility of death, through the comparison of Desdemona’s life to the light of a candle. He takes this a step further by referring to her as a rose, which is symbolic for love, passion, beauty and fragility and it is also argued that when he states he has “pluck’d thy rose” it is referring to her virginity. As a rose encompasses many qualities of Desdemona, I decided to incorporate it into my performance.

As Othello grows desperate for a justification of the murder, he clings to a false persona of either being a servant of justice, or even...