Race and Sex in "Othello" Book Review by Nicky

Race and Sex in "Othello"
An analysis of the relationship between race and sex in William Shakespeare's "Othello".
# 129014 | 1,048 words | 1 source | MLA | 2010 | US
Published on Aug 25, 2010 in English (Analysis) , Shakespeare (Othello)

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This paper examines how the relationship between race and sex is extremely significant when considering all of the factors at work in "Othello". It looks at how the issue of race and the matter of gender are introduced early in the play because they are dominant themes that directly affect Othello's behavior. As an outsider, Othello is a strange man in a strange land. He is never completely accepted and the one person with whom he thinks he has a relationship is only out to destroy him. When Othello begins to unravel, he becomes self-conscious and begins to think that his looks might be what drove Desdemona away. The paper also discusses how Desdemona represents the gender issue, which turns out to be the reason for her demise and how race and gender issues hold hands in this play, as they serve as equally destructive tools.

From the Paper:

"Race is introduced as a major player in the play in the opening scene when Iago refers to Othello as "the Moor" (Shakespeare I.i.40). There can be no doubt that Iago is jealous and that his jealousy stems, at least in part, to who and what Othello is. Iago's jealousy is established early in the play as to set the stage for jealousy. Iago has been overlooked because of Cassio's promotion and this sparks his anger, which is projected directly to Othello and Iago's compulsion to destroy him. This destruction includes the added advantage that Othello is wedded to a white woman. Iago constantly refers to Othello as the Moor in these first opening scenes, insinuating that the man does not deserve his position because of his race. He confesses that he hates Othello and insults him by insulting all masters. Roderigo even points out how Othello is different because of he looks by commenting about his "thick lips" (I.i.66). It should also be noted that Othello has issues with his race when he begins to doubt Desdmona's faithfulness. "

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Shakespeare, William. Othello. Kenneth Muir, ed. New York: Penguin Books. 1968.

Cite this Book Review:

APA Format

Race and Sex in "Othello" (2010, August 25) Retrieved September 29, 2022, from https://www.academon.com/book-review/race-and-sex-in-othello-129014/

MLA Format

"Race and Sex in "Othello"" 25 August 2010. Web. 29 September. 2022. <https://www.academon.com/book-review/race-and-sex-in-othello-129014/>