Effects Of Jealousy In Othello

621 Words3 Pages

Shakespeare’s play, Othello, deeply explores the effects of jealousy on a person. Shakespeare also portrays the different types of jealousy and alludes to the causes of them. Othello is a tragic play written by William Shakespeare around 1603, about a man, Iago, who plots to take revenge on a Moorish soldier, Othello, for he has “done my (Iago’s) office”. The deaths of several people, including Othello’s wife Desdemona, Iago’s wife Emilia, Othello and Iago’s companion Roderigo, were all directly linked to Iago’s actions. Othello illustrates that jealousy often leads to revenge, jealousy can prevent a successful relationship, and jealousy leading to one’s downfall. Jealousy is often the catalyst for revenge. Shakespeare’s Othello displays …show more content…

Also, each relationship in Othello provokes jealousy in one partner. In a typical Venetian society, a woman was considered to be a man’s property, so if a woman was disobedient, it negatively impacted the man, while also questioning his masculinity. The hyperbolic soliloquy as Othello expressed he would “rather be a toad” than “keep a corner of the thing I love” is Othello’s justification of killing his wife, as her untrustworthiness challenged his masculinity and reputation. Referring to Desdemona as a “thing” emphasises the idea of women being property. Iago’s jealousy of Desdemona and Othello’s relationship is emphasised through the degrading comment of Othello, “an old black ram” “tupping” Brabantio’s “white ewe”. Comparing Othello to an “old black ram” introduces animalistic imagery, and puts him at a level below humans on the Great Chain of Being. The coming together of an animal and a human would disrupt the chain, and was thought to also disrupt the laws of nature and cause bizarre events to occur. The descriptive word, “black” highlighted that in the Renaissance times, black stood for sin and evilness. Emilia’s views on men are discovered through the metaphor comparing men to “stomachs” and women to “food”. Men “eat us hungrily, and when they are full they belch us”, implies men get rid of women as soon as they have had enough of them, and therefore should not be trusted.

Show More
Open Document