Iago's Manipulations: Master of Words and People in Othello by Shakespeare

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What makes a successful villain? In the case of Shakespeare’s Othello, Iago’s ability to manipulate the people around him with his words is what leads to his success. The play Othello is a tragedy. True to form, the play sees multiple deaths, all of which were due to Iago’s influences. The main theme of the drama is revenge. The events that take place are due to Iago’s pursuit of revenge. Iago manipulates the people and events throughout the course of the play in order to enact this revenge. In Othello, Iago manipulates the situations he finds himself in, the people who happen to be around him, and the words that come out of his mouth to ensure his mission for revenge is a success. Iago impacts everyone in the play. While he is an enemy, a husband, and a confidant, he is not a friend. He is not much more of an acquaintance of Roderigo and Desdemona. They become pawns that he moves and manipulates later on. Cassio, however, is a fellow soldier who becomes his rival. Iago wants the promotion that Cassio acquired. Emilia plays a less heated role with Iago. She is his wife, though she is not very happy about it. Their marriage is an unhappy one, in large part, due to Iago’s insults and negative view of women. The relationship the play focuses on is the one between Iago and Othello. Iago serves under Othello in the military. Their relationship has two sides: Iago’s hatred of Othello and Othello’s trust in Iago. Othello depends on Iago as a confidant, which is what makes Iago’s manipulations possible. Iago is the villain. He is vindictive, egotistical, and knowledgeable about people. All of his dealings in the play revolve around his vindictive behavior, which he uses to manipulate people into doing what he wants. At the start of the ... ... middle of paper ... ...tatements in just the right way. He is so devious that he is not found out until the end of the play when there is nothing they can do to right his wrongs. What truly make Iago the ultimate villain is his ability to manipulate the world around him. Works Cited Bloom., Harold. "Bloom on Iago from Othello." Bloom's Literature. Facts On File, Inc. Web. 12 Feb. 2014. Boyce, Charles. "Iago." Bloom's Literature. Facts On File, Inc. Web. 12 Feb. 2014. Canning, Albert Stratford George. Shakespeare Studied in Six Plays . London: T. F. Unwin, 1907. Shakespeare Online. 20 Aug. 2009. 19 Feb. 2014. Christofides, R. M. "Iago And Equivocation: The Seduction And Damnation Of Othello." Early Modern Literary Studies 15.1 (2009): 6. Literary Reference Center. Web. 12 Feb. 2014. Shakespeare, William. Signet Classic Shakespeare Series. New York: New American Library, 1998. Print.

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