Iago's Prejudice In Othello

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When setting a goal, one often strategizes and uses various tactics to ultimately achieve one’s desired objective. In William Shakespeare’s Othello, the character of Iago does exactly that. Iago’s sinister intent is to ruin Othello’s life by gaining his trust and then backstabbing him. In order to ensure the success of his plot to “poison his delight” (Shakespeare 1.1. 68), Iago exploits the people around him with different methods. One of the most prominent strategies that Iago utilizes is racism - but this does not necessarily imply that he is a genuine racist. In William Shakespeare’s Othello, Iago’s prejudiced comments are not authentic because he solely makes discriminatory suggestions when manipulating Brabantio’s phobia of miscegenation,…show more content…
223-225). Once again, Iago uses a racial stereotype and declares that Othello only won over Desdemona because he lied to her. But Iago is solely using this discriminatory suggestion to persuade Roderigo into believing the affair, therefore leading him to resent Cassio and to eventually kill him. To recapitulate, Iago is not authentically a racist because he simply uses racism as a strategy to manipulate Roderigo’s desire for Desdemona.Finally, Iago merely makes racist comments to manipulate others, even Othello, the victim himself, who is self-conscious of his ethnicity. One example of this is in Act 3, Scene 3, when Iago is trying to persuade Othello into believing Desdemona has cheated on him with Cassio. Iago tells him, “Not to affect many proposèd matches / Of her own clime, complexion, and degree, / Whereto we see in all things nature tends- / Foh! one may smell in such a will most rank, / Foul disproportion, thoughts unnatural” (3.3. 229-233). In this quote, Iago is implying that Desdemona must have wicked and hideous desires if she chose to marry a black man like Othello, rather than her various other white
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