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What are the thematic and dramatic purposes of the soliloquy of Act III acene iii,...

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nellie001 | Student | eNotes Newbie

Posted November 12, 2008 at 2:46 AM via web

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What are the thematic and dramatic purposes of the soliloquy of Act III acene iii, lines 258-276 of "Othello"?

The soliloquy starts with "This fellow's of exceeding honesty.......When we do quicken. Look where she comes".

What is meant with dramatic purposes? Is that how it fits into the plot? What is meant with thematic purpose? Perhaps if I understand this I will be able to pull all strings together.

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purplepenguin | (Level 2) Adjunct Educator

Posted November 12, 2008 at 11:29 AM (Answer #1)

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This particular scene holds the dramatic purpose of the entire play. Iago sets Othello up to enact the tragic events that unfold. Iago instills in Othello the beginnings of suspicion and jealously regarding Desdemonia. Iago does this so cunningly that Othello truly believes that Iago is the only one who is completely honest with him, "This fellow's of exceeding honesty,"when Iago is a shrewd deceiver.

The themetic purpose lies in jealousy and lack of self-esteem. Othello's feeling of unworthiness makes him gullible to believe the untruths of Desdemonia's infidelity as told by Iago, who has vengeance as his motive.

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