Analysis of an Extract from William Shakespeare's Othello
In the play 'Othello', four characters are murdered. The character
Iago, who manipulated certain characters into wanting to kill them.
Desdemona, Emilia, Othello, and Roderigo, are killed. Iago originally
did this out of jealousy of Othello and Roderigo. The deaths of these
four characters were inevitable. There was justice in this play for
all of the characters who were involved in the killing of the four
Act V Scene II in many ways represents the emotional climax of the
play. The events which have preceded this point have led Othello to
the decision to kill his beautiful wife Desdemona. The major themes of
this act are the emotional conflict felt by Othello and the
protestation of innocent express by Desdemona.
The play's final, bloody scene opens in the bed chambers of Othello
and Desdemona as the deranged Moor battles between his love for his
beautiful young wife and his desire to murder her. This atmosphere of
this scene opens with bitterness. Throughout this scene Othello is
speaking in soliloquies which are delivered in blank verse. He repeats
the phrase "it is the cause, it is the cause" Shakespeare makes use of
repetition to emphasize the fact that Othello is acting out of
conviction. Othello is convinced of Desdemona guilt. The language
device is useful because it emphasizes that Othello sees himself has
justified to commit the murder of Desdemona and yet does so
resonantly. "It me not name it to you" this implies that Othello is
very upset but doesn't want to name the "cause" because it has caused
him great pain.
The opening line shows Othello trying to convince himself to go ahead
with his plan "it is the cause yet I will not shed her blood" this
suggests that even though he is convince of his guilt and see her as
the source of his emotional turmoil he has an inner conflict about
The sight of Desdemona lining asleep makes it even more difficult for
Othello to commit her murder. Shakespeare makes expert uses of simile
to paint a picture of pristine beauty and innocence "whiter skin of
hers than snow". This creates an image of a snow covered landscape
unspoiled by any signs of life.
This whiteness is also representative to innocent in a similar manner
to a bride on her wedding day. "â€¦smooth as monumental alabaster"
creates the image of unblemished innocence. Shakespeare is successful
through the use of these similes in creating in the readers mind the
idea of innocence asleep on the bed. We understand why Othello
struggles with the felling of love and hate.
"Yet she must die" Shakespeare makes use of constructs to jolt the
reader out of the revelry of innocence. These words seem very harsh
and bring back to us the reality of what Othello has come to do.