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What is Othello about?

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shantecampbell | Student, Undergraduate | eNotes Newbie

Posted May 20, 2009 at 11:38 PM via web

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What is Othello about?

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epollock | Valedictorian

Posted May 21, 2009 at 12:03 AM (Answer #1)

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shantecampbell,

Shakespeare’s tragedy, Othello is a wonderfully engrossing tragedy about a soldier, Iago, who reveals his hatred of Othello for choosing Cassio as his officer, and possibly sleeping with Iago’s wife Emilia. Iago explains his plan to avenge Othello by suggesting Cassio is sleeping with Othello’s wife, Desdemona.

Iago soon informs Othello that Cassio is having an affair with Desdemona. Iago then hatches a plan for Cassio to be disrespected in Othello’s eyes, and Othello then dismissed Cassio from the service. Later, Cassio speaks with Desdemona who resolves to lobby on Cassio’s behalf for Cassio’s job back.

Othello complains of a headache to Desdemona, resulting in her dropping a valuable handkerchief, supposedly with magical powers his first gift to her. Iago makes sure Cassio finds this. Othello demands proof of Desdemona's infidelity from Iago. Reluctantly Iago tells him he saw Cassio wipe his brow with Desdemona's handkerchief. Convinced, Iago is promoted to lieutenant and ordered to kill Cassio. Meanwhile, Desdemona worries about her missing handkerchief, knowing it could make her husband doubt her fidelity. Sure enough she is asked for the handkerchief by her suspicious husband but cannot find it.

Iago later talks to Cassio about Cassio's mistress Bianca, each smile and gesture infuriating a hidden Othello who thinks Cassio is talking about sleeping with Desdemona. Bianca then arrives, angrily giving back Desdemona's handkerchief that Cassio gave her. Furious, Othello decides to kill Desdemona in her bed, which is Iago's idea.

Iago then tells Roderigo how to kill Cassio. Roderigo attacks Cassio but Cassio wounds Roderigo. Iago from behind, stabs Cassio, wounding him in the leg. Seizing Roderigo, Iago stabs and wounds him "in revenge" for wounding his "friend" Cassio.

Desdemona's jealous husband arrives, trying to convince himself that he is killing her for her own good. Desdemona pleads her innocence, saying Cassio can prove her innocence. Her husband replies Cassio confessed and is dead, then kills Desdemona.

Emilia reveals Iago has killed Roderigo, Desdemona not revealing who killed her before dying. Othello tells Emilia he killed Desdemona, Emilia despite Iago's frantic attempts to stop her, revealing that she found the handkerchief and gave it to Iago. Iago stabs Emilia, escaping, Emilia dying. Iago is captured, Othello stabbing but not killing him before having his sword removed. Othello, realizing what he has done, kills himself, lying on top of his wife.

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lazy16 | Student, Grade 11 | eNotes Newbie

Posted July 9, 2009 at 9:38 AM (Answer #2)

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Othello is about a black man who marries a white women named Desdemona, who is younger then he his. and this guy named Iago doesn't like Othello so he Poisson's  his mind to think that Othello's wife Desdemona is cheating on him with Cassio. Also This other guy named Rod is in love with Desdemona and wants her for his own, so Rod and Iago plan to get Othello and Desdemona apart so Rod can get her. But little does Rod know that Iago really hates Othello with such a passion that he can't stand to see him happy so he will do anything in his power to make Othello unhappy and very miserable.  in the end of this tragedy Iago kills Rod, Othello strangles Desdemona, Iago stabs his wife, and Othello stabs him self with his own dagger. As for Cassio he runs off with his girlfriend Bianca, and takes Othello's lieutenant job. And as for Iago he was left with no friends or wife to care for him and to love him

 

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