Justice In Othello And The Tempest

1723 words - 7 pages

How does the pursuit of justice shape order and disorder?Justice. It protects us, defends us and upholds our rights . It provides security to innocents by promising retribution to wrongdoers and lawbreakers. It is a powerful source of strength to maintain fairness and equality. It can also be expressed as an action to right a wrong, to punish those who wronged us , so the victim feels on equal standing with the perpetrator, but to what extent will the victim be satisfied? Everyone has a different opinion of the scale of justice and many will go to extreme measures in order to obtain their own sense of justice. In The Tempest and Othello, the pursuit of justice is the motive force that drives the story. Each character sets off on his own quest to reclaim justice from those who have wronged them, believing themselves to be the instruments of divine justice. Order might be restored in the end, however, the repercussions of their actions hugely backfire on them causing the pursuit for justice to bring disorder and chaos too.Othello's search for justice ultimately brought upon the destruction to not only himself but to those around him. Manipulated by Iago to believe his wife was an adulteress , Othello was spurred to take the life of his most beloved Desdemona. The scene where Othello murders Desdemona is indeed heart wrenching, it is villainous how Iago managed to tear down the great and noble military general and reduce him to such a beastial state. For Othello cannot even bear the thought that his beautiful , fair, aristocratic wife would be unfaithful to him. It seems Othello in a way has a very simplistic view on human emotions, it is either he loves Desdemona with all his heart and soul or the opposite, he loathes her with the same intense passion. When he first approaches Desdemona for the handkerchief, he does not confront her on the matter , in fact he traps her , trying to force the answer out of her. Shouting the one worded questions "handkerchief!" repetitively , signifying he's descend into a bestial state . But maybe Othello is quick to form his conclusion because he secretly believes what the white venetian society has relentlessly pictured him to be , a black moor who is an unattractive creature , that is unworthy of love. However brief, Othello does question "honest Iago" saying " if thou does slander her and torture me, abandon all remorse, on horrors head horrors accumulate" but quickly gives in to Iago's accusations again. Iago plays the faithful friend and provides him the proof he needs , that is seeing Cassio with Desdemona's handkerchief. Here Othello chooses to believe appearance over reality, he never bothered to delve deeper for the truth , simply taking the sight of Cassio's laughther at face value ,as a sign that he has slept with Desdemona and is reveling in it. And this proves the last straw for Othello, and he colludes with Iago to plan the murder of Cassio and Desdemona. Compared to when in the earlier scene in Venice...

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