Monday, February 18, 2019
The Turkish-Venetian War in Othello Essay -- Othello essays
The Turkish-Venetian War in Othello According to A. L. Rowse, William Shakespe ars Othello is virtuoso of the just about perfect plays ever written (13). There is practically nobody in it that does not contribute to spell or character ontogeny (unlike Hamlet, which is filled with a large cast, complexities, and sub-plots). G. B. Harrison agrees that the construction is perfect (1058). Only devil brief scenes with a clown in Act III dont expect to advance the play whatever. That, and one strange plot element the Turkish war and change of locale from Venice to Cyprus. If the play be merely astir(predicate) Iago convincing a jealous Othello that his wife is sleeping with Cassio, why fuss having a war between Acts I and II? None of the characters are killed or wounded in the war, nor does the politics of the Venetian acquisitions affect the plot (in Act IV, scene 1, Lodovico speculates that Othello is furious because hes called home, but we know hes really angry because he thi nks his wife is cheating on him), nor are in that respect any speeches expounding on either the glories or horrors of war, such as there are in Henry V and Julius Caesar. Why then, in this most perfect of plays, is there such a major element as a war? What possible relevance could it have to Iagos plots and Othellos jealous mania? I contend that the war is extremely important--it is the genuinely crux upon which the spotless plot turns. When we first meet Othello, he is the epitome of a calm, self-assured, non-provocative army general more concerned with honor, virtue, and his social standing than with war and battles. His very first line is, It is better as it is (1.2.6). This is a conservative, contented man, in reality opposed to violence. Note how he breaks up the fight betwe... ...ith Introduction. Lanham, MD University insistence of America, 1985. Shakespeare, William. Othello. In The Electric Shakespeare. Princeton University. 1996. http//www.eiu.edu/multilit/studya broad/othello/othello_all.html No line nos. Vaughan, Virginia Mason, and Kent Cartwright, eds. Othello New Perspectives. Cranbury, NJ Associated University Press, 1991. Wayne, Valerie. historic Differences Misogyny and Othello. The Matter of Difference Materialist Feminist Criticism of Shakespeare. Ed Valerie Wayne. Ithaca, NY Cornell University Press, 1991. Wright, Louis B. and Virginia A. LaMar. The good-natured Qualities of Othello. Readings on The Tragedies. Ed. Clarice Swisher. San Diego Greenhaven Press, 1996. Reprint from Introduction to The Tragedy of Othello, the Moor of Venice by William Shakespeare. N. p. Simon and Schuster, Inc., 1957.