In this opening scene, we see Roderigo and Iago talking about Desdemona and Othello.
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He may very well have been describing the epic Shakespearean drama, Othello. Aristotle prescribed three main ingredients for a tragic drama recipe: Moreover the plot of Othello contains a powerful katharsis through its climax and conclusion, and an anagnorisis when Othello realizes that Iago and Desdemona are not who they seemed to be.
According to Kennedy and Gioia, Aristotle states that a tragic hero must have three dominant qualities: Othello is not only a successful general in the Venetian army but is also well respected, admired, and well liked. The most distinctive feature of the Aristotelian tragic hero is hamartia; his downfall must be brought about by a character flaw or flaw in judgment that leads to his destruction.
Thus hamartia is more than a moral weakness; it is a crucial mistake on the part of the tragic hero that causes him to plunge from greatness to grief. Instead of investigating the matter further, Othello rashly jumps to the worst conclusions about his wife and believes every lie that Iago whispers into his ear.
But the tragic hero is not the only element required by Aristotle for tragedy. A true Aristotelian tragedy also contains what the Greeks called a katharsis, or a purgation that leaves the audience feeling justified and uplifted.
As Kennedy and Gioia point out, this purgation is not necessarily always a positive one Moreover, these interpretations assume that the fear and pity aroused by tragedy is purged throughout the play, resulting in the state of katharsis.
This implies that to feel the satisfaction of a good katharsis in a tragedy, the drama must arouse feelings of pity and fear in the audience and then expunge those feelings through a satisfactory conclusion. In Othello, Shakespeare certainly moves the audience to feel pity for Othello, for Desdemona, for Cassio, and even for Iago.
They also fear for the fate of the happy couple, and realize their worst fears when Othello smothers his innocent wife in a jealous rage. Once more the audience pities Othello when he recognizes afterwards that Desdemona is innocent and stabs himself in remorse.
The ultimate purpose of katharsis in a tragedy, as Kennedy and Gioia point out, is to purify our feelings, refining them into something more ennobling The audience may not come away from a production of Othello laughing or feeling particularly cheerful, but they will certainly feel as though they have learned something important and witnessed an epic drama that has affected them morally and spiritually.
This is the purpose of tragedy — to dramatize the weaknesses, despair, and failings of the human spirit and to demonstrate how to better ourselves through this experience.
Shakespeare brings out this particular feature of anagnorisis towards the end of the play when Othello realizes that his trusted friend Iago has trapped him in a web of lies and has deceived him into thinking Desdemona is unfaithful. She loved thee, cruel Moor. The second aspect of the Greek word anagnorisis is its more superficial, general connotation.
It is the simple epiphany experienced by the tragic hero as he realizes something significant, like the fact that he has killed the woman he loves for no reason.
For the audience, the moment is especially climactic, because we have known the truth all along. How then does one distinguish a simple play of comedy from a great Aristotelian drama? Aristotle said three dramatic features provide this distinction: Othello is a tragic drama of epic proportions that has stood the test of time and continues to move audiences with its powerful themes of jealousy, intrigue, betrayal, faithfulness, death, and remorse.
Literature Compass1 1 Tragic Katharsis and Reparation:Essay about Othello and Iago “Othello” is a tragedy play, about a man named Othello, and how a friend of his named Iago betrays Othello and uses Othello’s love for a woman named Desdemona to betray him.
"Valiant Othello, we must straight employ you/Against the general enemy in Ottoman." 6. Brabantio complains to the Duke about Othello's marriage to Desdemona. After listening to both sides of the story, what was the Duke's reply?.
The dangers of jealousy is a strong theme that runs throughout the play 'Othello'. The following quotes serve as examples of the theme. Great fodder for class discussion or essay ideas!
Everything you ever wanted to know about quotes about Othello, written by experts with you in mind. Tragic hero othello essay prompts Important questions about Shakespeare's Othello to use as essay ideas and many research.
Othello: Essay Topics Othello as Tragic Hero Stage History of. Like Macbeth, this is a useful infographic and visual display of the play. This quote is significant to the play because it is Othello saying that he truly loves Desdemona but when he is full of jealousy, he will not be the calm, sweet man that he is; he will turn against her and everything will turn to chaos.