Othello Questions and Answers
by William Shakespeare

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Does trust bring about Othello's tragedy?

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Edith Sykes eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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Othello's tragedy is most attributed to jealousy and a lack of self-worth as a husband.  It is because Othello is so insecure in his personal relationship with his wife Desdemona that Iago is able to manipulate him so effectively.

At first Othello is confident in his marriage to Desdemona, but little by little Iago convinces him that she cannot be trusted.  He reminds Othello that Desdemona already deceived a man she loved dearly, her father.  Othello becomes confused, suspicious and eventually consumed with jealous rage at the thought that his beautiful wife is cheating on him.  This thought so repulses the honorable and dignified Othello, that he responds as if on the battlefield.

"Yet she must die, else she'll betray more men.
Put out the light, and then put out the light:
If I quench thee, thou flaming minister,
I can again thy former light restore,"
(V.ii.1-9)   (Shakespeare)


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Keri Sadler eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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frizzyperm | Student

The tragedy of Othello is not about trust, or lack of trust. It is anger. All the main characters display anger management problems and because of this they become their own victims of tragedy.

Iago says, "Beware the green-eyed God of Anger my lord" when trying to trick Othello into becoming angry!!! Because Iago is angry too. He makes Micheal Cassio angry by giving him water to drink instead of wine. He makes Desdamona angry by stealing her handkerchief.

Iago spreads anger like fire among all the main characters and they fall into angry tragedy because they can't control themselves.

In the end, Desdamona murders Othello because she is so angry with him.