The Multiple Themes of "Othello" Analytical Essay by Jessie

The Multiple Themes of "Othello"
A look at various themes in William Shakespeare's tragedy, "Othello."
# 149585 | 910 words | 4 sources | MLA | 2011 | US
Published on Dec 25, 2011 in Shakespeare (Othello)

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This paper examines the themes of love, prejudice, jealously and revenge as they are interwoven into Shakespeare's tragedy, "Othello." According to the paper, these themes reinforce and refine each other throughout this work. Various examples from the text are given showing love, prejudice, jealousy and revenge, citing the characters that display these emotions and themes. Additionally, the paper contains salient quotes which also explore the use of these themes. The paper also gives a brief character analysis of Othello, Desdemona and Iago. The paper concludes by stating that Othello's fall is ultimately the result of the combination of four distinct themes mentioned above.

From the Paper:

"Desdemona and Othello have their love tested as they embark upon their new marriage. For example, prejudice is important to the definition of love because Othello is constantly judged by the color of his skin. Iago's reference to Othello as "his Moorship," a mocking combination of Moor and worship, is just one example of the prejudice that Othello must face. Throughout the play, Othello is frequently the subject of prejudice. Iago makes particularly effective use of his ability to mock Othello for being black. When he talks to Desdemona's father, Iago states that that "Even now, now, very now, an old black ram/ Is tupping your white ewe" (I.1.97-98). Roderigo echoes Iago's prejudice when he complains that the "fair daughter" has fallen because of her relationship with "the gross clasps of a lascivious Moor" (I.1.121,125). The prejudice that he experiences among white men helps lead Othello to love Desdemona because she is the one character who sees him first as a man rather than as a black man. Desdemona's absence of prejudice supports their love and their marriage only collapses when Othello that Desdemona too shares the prejudice of society, Othello goes crazy with grief."

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Grady, H. "Iago and the Dialectic of Enlightenment: Reason, Will and Desire in Othello" Criticism, Vol. 37, No. 4, 1995.
  • Marchitello, H. "Versalius Fabrica and Shakespeare's Othello: Anatomy, Gender and the Narrative Production of Meaning," Criticism, Vol. 35, No. 4, 1993.
  • Shakespeare, W. Othello. Washington Square Press, New York, NY, 1993.
  • Vanita, R. "Proper men and fallen women: The unprotected wives in Othello," Studies in English Literature, Vol. 34, No. 2, 1994.

Cite this Analytical Essay:

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The Multiple Themes of "Othello" (2011, December 25) Retrieved September 21, 2023, from

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"The Multiple Themes of "Othello"" 25 December 2011. Web. 21 September. 2023. <>