Iago And Betrayal In “Othello”

2545 WordsOct 15, 201311 Pages
AP 05/11/11 Iago And Betrayal In “Othello” “Othello” is one of the most successful plays in Shakespeare’s collection. One of the subjects the tragedy addresses is betrayal which is a crucial part of the play that helps the author develop events to bring it to its climax. Iago’s character symbolizes disloyalty, but what are the motives of his treachery? It seems like there is not enough reason for his actions. By creating Iago in “Othello” as perhaps a masterpiece villain comparing to all his other plays, Shakespeare introduces to the audience and reader an evil type of person who unfortunately exists in society, and he suggests that disloyalty is just part of such person’s nature, so one could betray for the sake of betrayal itself.…show more content…
Iago’s main goal is focused on taking a revenge from Othello. To be able to accomplish his plan, first Iago provides his “loyal” service to Othello, “In following him I follow but myself” (Act 1. Scene 1. 57). Drama theorist Ferguson notices that Iago is a type of person who knows how to control his emotions when he is told so by his motive in order to present himself as a reliable man (222). Once he gains the trust of Othello, he starts planting the evil seeds “Hell and night/ Must bring this monstrous birth to the world’s light”(Act 2. Scene 1. 402-403). After staging the drunk riot and getting Cassio fired from his lieutenancy, Iago starts poisoning Othello’s mind with a suspicion that Cassio and Desdemona have a love affair. Iago’s perfect plan develops when Desdemona keeps pleading Othello to reinstate Cassio which makes Othello both mad and jealous, “The Moor already changes with my poison” (Act 3. Scene 3. 329). To secure his strong footing before Othello, Iago makes him go mad because of jealousy from one side, and warns him to take a heed against jealousy from the other side, “O beware my lord of jealousy; / It is the green-eyed monster, which doth mock / The meat it feeds on” (Act 3. scene 3. 167). Ferguson analyzes that Iago carefully continues wearing his most compassionate mask, and meantime by gathering any false facts needed, he warns Othello not to jump into any conclusion (223).
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