Belonging Themes in William Shakespeare’s Play Othello and Gurinder Chadha’s Film Bride and Prejudice

Belonging Themes in William Shakespeare’s Play Othello and Gurinder Chadha’s Film Bride and Prejudice

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Whilst plainly mentioning the word belonging, each and every one of our minds will generate a unique visualisation of what we interpret of belonging. This is because I believe that one’s life experience can enhance and diminish their sense of belonging. William Shakespeare’s play Othello and Gurinder Chadha’s film Bride and Prejudice both deeply explores the notion of belonging through the use of various film techniques, imagery, binary opposites and dramatic techniques.

Othello’s ethnic background has set him aside as “the other” to the Venetian society. He does not belong to their the Venetian community society and his sense of belonging towards them has been enhanced because of his adventurous childhood experience. Othello ironically states that he will deliver the “witchcraft” he had used to win his fair lady, Desdemona when ending his soliloquy . In Othello’s romantic soliloquy embedded with rich language he recounts his life experience , “The battles,sieges,fortunes that I have passed, I ran it through even from my boyish days “ “Of being taken by the insolent foe and sold to slavery.” These poetic lines highlight his experience of hardship which won Desdemona. However before Othello elopes with Desdemona he was accepted accepted,loved me oft invited me, still questioned me the story of my life.” This facilitates the audience to understand that he was only marginalised for his differences after he married Desdemona.
In the film poster of Bride and Prejudice is divided into half in order to show a contrast in the two different ...


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... and husband. Desdemona’s knowledge of her mother’s life experience has enhanced her sense of belonging towards Othello when she says “ I am hitherto your daughter .But here is my husband , And so much duty as my mother showed.” Even though Desdemona is revealed to have the positive feminine qualities she subverts her stereotype as she breaks away from her timid nut shell and courageously admits her love towards Othello in the council chamber. Correspondingly Lalita also feels that she must fulfil her duty as a daughter to her father when she replies to her friend; “ I can not leave , father needs me “ Lalita also challenges the stereotypical characteristics of women as she expresses her feelings about her romantic idealism on marriage.
Both texts evidently proves that an individuals personal experience can both enhance and diminish their sense of belonging.





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