Why Is Shakespeares Othello Still Relevant in Todays Audiences?

940 Words Sep 28th, 2012 4 Pages
Why is Shakespeare’s “Othello” still relevant in today’s audiences?
“When you begin a journey of revenge, start by digging two graves: one for your enemy, and one for yourself.” – Jodi Picoult. Othello is a very well-known Shakespearian text and is still relevant to today’s audiences. The themes in “Othello” are still applicable to today’s many audiences; Betrayal is a key theme presented in Othello, and is also still relevant to today’s audiences. Racism is a significant addition presented in the play, and unfortunately still pervades contemporary society. Madness and jealousy drive the action as it thrives in the play; these destructive emotions are still
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Emilia plays the classic indirect sidekick who is sadly tricked into helping the villain achieve his goal.
The themes relevant in the text that are still applicable to the modern interests of today are as follows; Betrayal is the key issue related with the text and consequently defines the term ‘tragedy’. Betrayal is portrayed in Shakespeare’s “Othello” all through the act and even from the very beginning; Act 1, Scene 1- Iago and Roderigo are discussing their hatred towards Othello. During this discussion, the racism and sort of indirect betrayal is brought out in the play as Iago explains to Roderigo his manipulating scheme leading to the betrayal and downfall of Othello; their captain and supposed ‘respected’ leader. Betrayal- in however many forms it may pursue- is sadly displayed regularly in life, and through many unwarranted situations varying even from day to day. Racism is a major issue associated in the reigns of the context of this script. The period of this Shakespearean text was also situated at the time of increase in hatred, discrimination and racism towards black ethnic races. In Act 1, Scene 1, we read of Iago’s racism towards Othello as a ‘fat lip(ped)’’savage’, as he tends to marry a smart, prized, beautiful yet white woman. All through the play Othello gets referred to as a savage or