Othello Language

In Shakespeare’s Othello there is an immediate contrast between Iago and Othello’s language.

In “Act1 scene 1” Iago’s first speech to Roderigo is of a revengeful nature and evil tone. “Despise me if I do not. Three great ones of the city (In personal suit to make me his lieutenant). ” Iago is infuriated with Othello’s neglect of him, Shakespeare creates this foreshadow of a tragic outcome early on, but he misleads the audience into thinking that Iago’s language is justified. Furthering Iago’s support from the Elizabethans is that Othello is seen as an outsider.In Aristotle theory of poetics one of the main themes of tragedy are the aspect of awe and pity, and that the protagonist is not introduced straight away. The audience automatically feels pity for poor Iago, as he has to beg Roderigo for money and has been deprived a promotion and because Othello is not primarily introduced he has no way of proving his justification for appointing Cassio.

This in the eyes of the Elizabethans makes Othello the antagonist. In “Act 1 scene 1”. Othello’s mind is poetic but simple, he is not observant.His nature tends outward. He is quite free from self examination, and is not given to reflection. Emotion gives him his imagination, but it confuses and dulls his intellect. In “Act 1 Scene 2” Shakespeare’s use of poetical linguistics limits Othello’s views on other characters “honest Iago”.

One of the main contrasts of language in Othello is “Act 1 Scene 2”. This is when the audience became aware of Iago’s duplicitous nature, at the beginning of the play he speaks of his resentment filled hate “I know my price, I am worth no worse a place.But he (as loving his own pride and purposes)” but he warns Othello of Brabantio’s “bad intentions”. Shakespeare showed the transformation in Iago’s language when he was interacting with other characters. This presented the audiences growing distrust. However articulate Othello is commanding, but arrogant “Keep up your bright swords for the dew will rust them” confident in his speech, he wooed “virtuous” Desdemona with his “enchanting” war stories.Shakespeare wanted the audience to be in awe of Othello and pity evoked for Iago in “Act 1 Scene 2” allowing the audience to empathise.

At this point of the play, dramatic irony sets the scene as the audience know of Iago’s “villainous” plans, but engrossed Othello has fallen under the hypnotism of love. Shakespeare’s use of language presents his obsession with “sweet” Desdemona as there“love is Olympus high”. “Act 1 Scene 3”

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