Othello Questions and Answers
by William Shakespeare

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In Act 3 Scene 3, how is Othello manipulated by Iago?

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David Morrison eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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In act 3, scene 3, Iago poisons Othello 's mind, insinuating that Desdemona's been cheating on him with Michael Cassio. It's a total lie, of course, but Iago is such a skilled manipulator that he's able to make his lies sound so utterly plausible. Iago has taken a perfectly innocent situation and completely distorted it to make it seem like there's something untoward going on. Cassio has asked Desdemona to intercede on his behalf with Othello, to get him restored to favor after his recent public disgrace. Desdemona gladly agrees; she's an old friend, and of course will do whatever she can to...

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Michael Stultz, M.A. eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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Iago has true skills of a great orator. He uses reverse psychology to manipulate Othello whose tragic flaw is his gullible and credulous nature. Othello has true faith in Iago which Iago uses for his own good. He first fills his(Othello) ears with rumours about Desdemona's affair with cassio and then uses the handkerchief as a way of proving his facts. This is how he gets rid of Othello and Cassio.

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