Othello's Tragic Flaw Essay

1323 words - 5 pages

Othello, a Moor, comes to Venice after several years of serving in the military. Being a Moor makes it difficult to be taken seriously. I tis like segregation in the 1960’s, white’s had luxury while colored had almost nothing. In order for Othello to gain some respect, he had to gain authoritative power, which he did by becoming a military general. In the military Othello meets Cassio and Iago, he chooses Cassio as his lieutenant which upsets Iago. The promotion of Cassio begins to show jealousy in the play. Even though Othello is not a ruler in Venice, his tragic flaws are jealousy and gullibility, therefore Othello is easily manipulated by Iago because Othello feels the need to be accepted.
Iago plans to revenge Othello for not choosing him to become lieutenant, and knowing that Othello is easily deceived makes it easier for Iago to manipulate him. Iago’s revenge did not only start because he was not chosen to be lieutenant, but also because Iago had suspicions that Othello was with Emilia, his wife. “I hate the Moor, And it is thought abroad that ‘twixt my sheets’ Has done my office. I know not if’t be true, But I, for mere suspicion in that kind, Will do as if for surety” (Shakespeare 55). Iago, earlier mentions his hate for Othello for not choosing him to be lieutenant, but now he suspects Othello is sleeping with his wife. Iago does not care if his suspicions are true, he will act as if it is true. With or without evidence Iago will find a way to control Othello because he knows he is too naïve. “After some time, to abuse Othello’s ear That he is too familiar with his wife. He hath a person and a smooth dispose To be suspected, framed to make women false. The Moor is of a free and open nature That thinks men honest that but seem to be so, And will be tenderly be led by th’ nose” (Shakespeare 55). After believing Othello had an affair with Emilia, Iago feels it is right to use Othello’s wife as his way to seek revenge. By using Othello’s closest ally, Cassio, it will be easier to make it seem as if Desdemona cheated on Othello.
Being a Moor makes it seem as if Othello is naïve and would believe all his men are honest to him, which is why Iago thinks Cassio is best to help create jealousy in Othello. Although it is not specifically mentioned, earlier it is said that Iago mentions all men who are what they seem are foolish. Othello is not a foolish man, he is a man who does not yet understand civilization because he spent so long in the military. It is not correct to believe so because, but because of Othello’s experience in the military Othello has become accustomed to taking orders. Taking orders does not necessarily mean Othello is gullible, but it did make him more susceptible to falling victim of Iago. “Othello’s gullibility is not really so very strange. Coal-black among the glittering Venetians, he is visibly the outsider, and in his bewilderment he naturally looks for the man who is visibly the insider, the man who knows the ropes,...

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