The Downfall Of Desdemona And Emilia

1096 words - 4 pages

Lakeisha FontanezCOM 1102 - Fall I 2014October 1, 2014Dr. J. Parla PalumboWeek 5The Downfall of Desdemona and EmiliaIn the play "Othello", by William Shakespeare, there are two major feminine figures that attract our attention; Desdemona, the bride of the play's tragic hero-Othello, and Emilia, the wife of one of the greatest villains of all time- Iago. Although they are comparable in their honor and loyalty to their husbands, there is also a sharp contrast between these women is realized with regard to Desdemona's innocence and idealism and Emilia's experience and realism and their perceptions of reality. Desdemona and Emilia are loyal women who want nothing more than to please their husbands. Both are wives of men who take charge. Their husbands are not just ordinary men in the Venetian army; they are men who hold high positions with honor and value. Desdemona's husband, Othello is a General in the army with men under his control and Emilia's husband, Iago is the ancient (standard-bearer) of Othello. Both women show honor and respect to their husbands Othello and Iago-doing just about anything that their husband's ask for. Because Iago knows these women are so loyal to them, he is able to create chaos and confusion to Othello and Desdemona and Emilia play right into his master plan of destruction.Desdemona and Othello have a relationship that is based on true love, and want nothing more than to be happy. This is the reason why Desdemona obeys Othello, even eventually becoming a unique victim of male dominance. After the deceptive seed had been planted by Iago, Othello believes that Desdemona is lewd and has been unfaithful to him; therefore Desdemona wants to pacify his concerns of her loyalty and tries to set his mind at ease by affirming:"I never didOffend you in my life; never loved CassioBut with such general warranty of heavenAs I might love. I never gave him token."(5.2.1230)She is genuine and repeatedly says that she has not been unfaithful to Othello with Cassio, proving that she is loyal to him, but only saying the words to verbally please him.Emilia is just as loyal to Iago as Desdemona is to Othello; however, their relationship does not seem to be based off of love (at least not from Iago), but more of a necessity. Iago is callous to Emilia and treats her poorly and disrespectful. Emilia is tough, so she does not think that her actions may have terrible consequences when she takes the handkerchief and lies to her mistress when asked if she had seen it and later neglects to speck up when Othello angrily confronts his wife about the whereabouts of the handkerchief. She is jealous of Desdemona and Othello's relationship, so when she finds Desdemona's handkerchief, she remembers that her husband had asked her to give it to him."I am glad I have found this napkinMy wayward husband hath a hundred timesWooed me to steal it; but she so loves the token,That she reserves it evermore about herTo kiss and talk to. I'll have the work ta'en outAnd...

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