Iago Character Analysis

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The character of Iago as the embodiment of jealousy, resentment and prejudice in William Shakespeare’s play Othello is the leading theme from the beginning to the end of the plot. As the play unfolds, it becomes apparent that Iago’s jealousy is the reason for the most unexpected developments that take place in the play.

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Iago as the embodiment of jealousy, resentment and prejudice

Iago is envious of Othello and says to Roderigo: “I hate the Moor; and it is thought abroad that ‘twixt my sheets He has done my office: I know not if’t be true. (Act 1, scene 3) Iago conspires against them to persuade Othello that Desdemona is carrying on an affair with Cassio. Othello replies by honoring the Shakespearean character. At the start, the Lenson grudges rapidly fade and evolve into the beginning of typical issues with trust and forgiveness in a relationship without attributing it to their knowledge. Emily says: “But jealous souls will not be answer’d so; They are not ever jealous for the cause, but jealous for they are jealous: ‘tis a monster Begot upon itself, born on itself.” She is referring to Othello, despite the fact that there is no proof or not, but a jealous individual will be jealous regardless of the situation. For Iago, slaying his own wife, when the truth came out, would not have resolved the situation. He let jealousy ruin him and demolish everything he had in life.

The racial prejudice is when Iago says: “Even now, now, very now, an old black ram Is tupping your white ewe. Arise, arise; Awake the snorting citizens with the bell, or else the devil will make a grandsire of you: Arise, I say.” (Act 1, scene 1) Iago is biased when he awakens Brabantio with the message of his daughter: “All my fond love thus do I blow to heaven: ‘Tis gone. Arise, black vengeance, from thy hollow hell.” (Act 3, scene 3) This indicates that Othello is lacking in ego within himself, and it reveals that he is not delighted with who he is or his own skin color. Othello is different, a configuration, on one level, of the racial underdog that has plagued, even persecuted us in America. He is not an exile because of the shade of his skin, but rather one who arouses the passions of the lesser man, whose prejudice ultimately shows us his humanity, not his “racism”.

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Violence is described by Othello’s quote: “I will chop her into messes” (Act 4, scene 1) Othello is overwhelmed with rage at Desdemona for deceiving him. “Moor, she was chaste; she loves thee, cruel moor; so, come my soul to bliss, as I speak true; so speaking as I think, I die. (Act IV, scene 1) Iago slays his own wife with no sentiment. Emilia discovered the truth about her husband’s cruel plan. “Therefore, confess thee freely of thy sin; For to deny each article with oath Cannot remove nor choke the strong conception That I do groan withal. Thou are to die.” (Act V, scene 2) Othello’s offensive attitude spreads until he murders his wife instead of experiencing sorrow and shame for what he did to his lady. More specifically, the targets of an investigation or inquest will give up their mysteries if the accurate technique and procedures are employed.

Othello asks, “who began this”, Iago answers: “I do not know “…Devesting them from bed” (Act 2, scene 3) Although Iago frames for his own purposes our understanding of the male political union as a friendship that prompts us of marriage, the resemblance between marriage and friendship is genuinely disturbing to Othello. Iago is suspicious that Othello has been sleeping with Emilia, but likewise, Cassio is sleeping with Othello’s wife, who is attempting to sleep with Desdemona, which enables him to seek revenge. If Iago cannot sleep with Desdemona, he will attempt to convince Othello to think that Desdemona is sleeping with Cassio.


Consequently, Iago as an adaptable, sadistic, revengeful individual can provoke people to deprive themselves of life, to ruin marriage with each other. Jealousy brought contradictions with some characters of the play, the disdain that Othello has for Cassio in comparison with Iago’s jealousy for Othello. Jealousy represents a significant element that William Shakespeare employs to set the action of the play in motion and develop its plot. Therefore, unlike Othello, who changes his behavior and starts to behave like a beast, Iago alters his personality from delight to hatred.

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