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MLA
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Literature & Language
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English (U.S.)
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Othello: The Moor of Venice (Essay Sample)

Instructions:
Instructions Here is an excerpt from Act 1, Scene 3, lines 296-364. Assgnment directions are below the excerpt. RODERIGO Iago,-- IAGO What say\'st thou, noble heart? RODERIGO What will I do, thinkest thou? IAGO Why, go to bed, and sleep. RODERIGO I will incontinently drown myself. IAGO If thou dost, I shall never love thee after. Why, thou silly gentleman! RODERIGO It is silliness to live when to live is torment; and then have we a prescription to die when death is our physician. IAGO O villainous! I have looked upon the world for four times seven years; and since I could distinguish betwixt a benefit and an injury, I never found man that knew how to love himself. Ere I would say, I would drown myself for the love of a guinea-hen, I would change my humanity with a baboon. RODERIGO What should I do? I confess it is my shame to be so fond; but it is not in my virtue to amend it. IAGO Virtue! a fig! \'tis in ourselves that we are thus or thus. Our bodies are our gardens, to the which our wills are gardeners: so that if we will plant nettles, or sow lettuce, set hyssop and weed up thyme, supply it with one gender of herbs, or distract it with many, either to have it sterile with idleness, or manured with industry, why, the power and corrigible authority of this lies in our wills. If the balance of our lives had not one scale of reason to poise another of sensuality, the blood and baseness of our natures would conduct us to most preposterous conclusions: but we have reason to cool our raging motions, our carnal stings, our unbitted lusts, whereof I take this that you call love to be a sect or scion. RODERIGO It cannot be. IAGO It is merely a lust of the blood and a permission of the will. Come, be a man. Drown thyself! drown cats and blind puppies. I have professed me thy friend and I confess me knit to thy deserving with cables of perdurable toughness; I could never better stead thee than now. Put money in thy purse; follow thou the wars; defeat thy favour with an usurped beard; I say, put money in thy purse. It cannot be that Desdemona should long continue her love to the Moor,-- put money in thy purse,--nor he his to her: it was a violent commencement, and thou shalt see an answerable sequestration:--put but money in thy purse. These Moors are changeable in their wills: fill thy purse with money:--the food that to him now is as luscious as locusts, shall be to him shortly as bitter as coloquintida. She must change for youth: when she is sated with his body, she will find the error of her choice: she must have change, she must: therefore put money in thy purse. If thou wilt needs damn thyself, do it a more delicate way than drowning. Make all the money thou canst: if sanctimony and a frail vow betwixt an erring barbarian and a supersubtle Venetian not too hard for my wits and all the tribe of hell, thou shalt enjoy her; therefore make money. A pox of drowning thyself! it is clean out of the way: seek thou rather to be hanged in compassing thy joy than to be drowned and go without her. RODERIGO Wilt thou be fast to my hopes, if I depend on the issue? IAGO Thou art sure of me:--go, make money:--I have told thee often, and I re-tell thee again and again, I hate the Moor: my cause is hearted; thine hath no less reason. Let us be conjunctive in our revenge against him: if thou canst cuckold him, thou dost thyself a pleasure, me a sport. There are many events in the womb of time which will be delivered. Traverse! go, provide thy money. We will have more of this to-morrow. Adieu. RODERIGO Where shall we meet i\' the morning? IAGO At my lodging. RODERIGO I\'ll be with thee betimes. IAGO Go to; farewell. Do you hear, Roderigo? RODERIGO What say you? IAGO No more of drowning, do you hear? RODERIGO I am changed: I\'ll go sell all my land. Exit First, I want you to find as many ways as you can that Iago tries to convince Roberigo not to kill himself. I think that there might be more than twenty of them. Quote the line and then explain how that is an attempt to stop Roderigo. Second, read Iago\'s soliloquy in lines 365-386. Explain why he really wants to prevent Roderigo\'s suicide and why he really \'hates\' Othello\'. Here is the No-Fear Shakespeare link. Here is a YouTube link to the scene for watching. You can stop watching at 4:08 on the video. source..
Content:
Author Name
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Othello - The Moor of Venice
Introduction:
Othello is perhaps one of the best known Shakespeare plays and it explores the theme of doomed love as well as tragedy and envy throughout. Apart from being a play, it has also been written as an opera by Giuseppe Verdi in a version which is actually almost as famous as the original. The play explores the unhinged jealousy of Othello regarding Desdemona, his wife whom he suspects of having an affair with Cassio urged on by the supposedly faithful lieutenant Iago who eventually leads Othello to taking his own life. It is a dark and classic tale of jealousy and intrigue set in the ambit of Venice although Othello is actually governor of Cyprus.
Plot and analysis
The first act demonstrates the anger of Desdemona`s father when she elopes with the moor Othello and is an astute reflection of the racial prejudice against blacks by Italians. Shakespeare`s commentary on the situation demonstrates the tragic connotations which eventually erupt at the end of the play. We are almost enthused by the prospect of Othello eloping with Desdemona as they go to Cyprus and the sea voyage which is fraught with dangers also shows that the Moor is willing to take risks to protect his newly found bride. The character studies created by Verdi are intensely powerful and show that jealousy is perhaps the main ruination of man who is without blemish initially but who is corrupted by women and the lust for power. The intrusi...
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