Othello Questions and Answers
by William Shakespeare

Othello book cover
Start Your Free Trial

In Othello, how is Iago responsile for Othello's tragedy?  

Expert Answers info

Pauline Sheehan eNotes educator | Certified Educator

calendarEducator since 2012

write2,388 answers

starTop subjects are Literature, Math, and Social Sciences

Opinion is divided on Iago's ultimate part in Othello's downfall. His role in Othello and indeed his contribution to the main theme of the play cannot be disputed. However, many would claim that Othello should have had the strength of character - at some point - to recognize Iago's motives and question him more convincingly. There is certainly an argument here for the danger of circumstantial evidence in any situation.

Should you feel that Othello is essentially noble and is the pawn in Iago's plan: 

the innocent hero falling victim to Iago's schemes and being corrupted by his evil

then you will blame Iago entirely. However, others

argue that Iago's actions merely cause Othello's noble facade to crumble, releasing his inherent savagery.

In this instance, the...

(The entire section contains 393 words.)

Unlock This Answer Now

check Approved by eNotes Editorial