What is the essence of that tragedy?
Among 37 plays created by Shakespeare, one of the most prominent is the tragedy «Othello”. The plot of the play, as well as many other plays by the English playwright, is borrowed. The source is the novel “The Moor of Venice ” belonging to Italian prose writer Giralda Chitio.
This play is about love and a tragedy of deceived trust. The great love of Othello and Desdemona is dying as a result of a collision with the world of evil, ambition and hypocrisy embodied in the image of Iago. The idea of jealousy, deceit, racism and the victory of evil over good is dominant in tragedy.
The action of the dramatic work takes place in the XVII century in Venice and later in Cyprus. In the introduction the reader becomes a witness to the dialogue of Iago, Othello’s ensign, with the local nobleman Rodrigo, who is hopelessly in love with the daughter of senator Brabanzio Desdemona. But Iago tells him that she secretly married to Othello – a Moor on a Venice service. He convinces Rodrigo in his hatred of Othello, since on the post of lieutenant, that is, his deputy, Othello took Cassio, instead of Iago. To take revenge on Othello, they report about Desdemona’s escape to her father, who in madness begins to seek Othello.
Othello returns to the Republic of Venice as a winner. He is greeted with honors. Only Iago and Rodrigo, his longtime ill-wishers are not happy with him because once they have suffered from the commander due to careless service. But Othello is completely absorbed in love with Desdemona and does not notice the intrigue spinning around him.
To carry out his plans, Iago persuades Cassio to negotiate for his slowed career advancement with Desdemona and at the same time makes Othello witness of this conversation. At the same time, Iago hints to him that their conversation is not at all innocent. Othello is trying to find out from his wife what the conversation was about, but her story burns up even more jealousy in him. Iago tries to arrange another various intrigue to make Othello suspect Desdemona in betrayal. Otello fully believes Iago. Blinded by jealousy, he does not notice the tricks.
In conclusion, the final action takes place in the bedroom. Othello enters and begins a famous monologue with the words: “Have you prayed …”. Desdemona realizes that her husband is completely poisoned by jealousy and plans to kill her. She begs to believe her because with all her heart she loves Othello and is completely faithful to him. But he does not believe her and being not able to cope with himself; he chokes Desdemona. Then, Othello realizes his mistake, but nothing can be changed, and he stabs himself.
So, the play “Othello” is a good example of tragedy, where all basic laws of the genre are adhered: the collapse of the hopes, the inability to change reality, the death of the main heroes. This dramatic play can rightfully be called a tragedy of feelings. The topic of confrontation between mind and feelings is the basis of the work. Each character was punished by death for being blindly guilty of his desires and emotions: Othello – jealousy, Desdemona – boundless faith in the love of her husband, Rodrigo – passion, Emily – trust and indecision, Iago – a ferocious desire for revenge and gain.
The critical analysis of the play shows the main motives of the literature, such as hopelessness of the conflict between the hero and reality, conflict, which is based not on the coincidence of circumstances, but the collision of different worlds; collision of heroes living on the laws of humanity and high morals, with the world of selfishness and cruelty.
In “Othello”, the conflict between the stranger, who is also alien in class, and hierarchical, predatory and, consequently, not completely human, is shown in the sharpest form. Therefore, Othello’s skin color is not only an expression of racial protest but also a much broader, human protest. It is obvious that his blackness makes him the hostage of circumstances. The character development created by the author makes this tragedy alive and organic. Each of them has both positive and negative features, this makes the play vital and always relevant.
Consequently, the game of Iago has practically succeeded, but he failed to control it to the end because of the scale of the intrigue and the abundance of its participants. Blind adherence to feelings and emotions, deprived of the voice of reason, according to the author, would inevitably turn into a tragedy.