Jealousy - Othello Essay

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Many of the characters in Othello were jealous of other people’s possessions. There were only two forms of jealousy, sexual and professional. Roderigo, Othello and Bianca were sexually jealous. Iago was both professionally and sexually jealous. Jealousy is a major theme of Othello since it lurked within so many of the characters and greatly affected the plot.

Jealousy will always be a part of the human personality, regardless of the era. The fact that all humans can relate to feelings of jealousy, means that Shakespeare can connect with his audience successfully. Jealousy manifests itself through two main characters in the play; Othello and Iago. In Othello’s case his jealousy can be directly linked to his insecurity, feelings of inferiority, faltering pride but most importantly, his skin colour. However, Othello’s path to destruction was not entirely his fault. The destructive words from ‘honest’ Iago brought out the worst in Othello.

However, jealousy is shown earlier in the play through Iago, it is Iago’s professional jealousy of Cassio’s promotion which ignites the dilemma of the play. This jealousy is a direct cause of Iago’s hatred for Othello. Iago also suspects Othello sleeping with his wife, Emilia. “For that I do suspect the lusty moor, hath leaped into my seat”, and he was also jealous of Othello because he has the fair Desdemona as his wife. Therefore, he planned to get even with Othello, “wife for wife.”


Shakespeare’s plays have a strong focus on themes that are still as relevant as they were 400years ago. Unfortunately, humanities flaws haven’t changed, although you can describe the 21st century as a “contemporary society” it hasn’t changed a great deal from the patriarchal and prejudice society that Shakespeare set his plays in. Humans still create and conform to racist stereotypes and the greed for power and control has destructive impacts. These same concepts are depicted throughout Othello

In today's society, all these themes are...

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