Iago: A Motiveless Malignity

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-‘The motive-hunting of motiveless Malignity’ – Samuel Taylor Coleridge
Iago: motiveless malignity?
No, I do not agree with Coleridge’s statement that states Iago to be a motiveless malignity. I believe that he has one purpose, which is to exact revenge on Othello, yet he does not care as to who he hurts in the process. For this plot, he gives two reasons. Firstly, Iago is devastated by the fact that Othello promotes a younger, less experienced man by the name of Cassio even though he believes he is the rightful man for the post, ‘I know my price, I am worth no worse a place’, and from this point on he is hell bent to make Othello pay for this decision. The second reason Iago gives directly to the audience is that there is a rumour that Othello slept with his wife, 'twixt my sheets he has done my office’, and even though this accusation is not a sound one, Iago tells the audience that he seek revenge nevertheless: ‘I know not if't be true; But I... will do as if for surety’. This, in my opinion, is to fuel his anger and drive him on to destroy Othello. Iago’s reaction to both of these is completely out of proportion which suggests that Iago is, in fact, truly evil. This statement is backed up by his blatant lack of care about the fates of the innocent people who get dragged into his revenge plot. Take Desdemona for example, a pure and faithful companion, killed by the man that loved her dearly, just to bring satisfaction to Iago. Another pawn in Iago’s revenge attack is Cassio: ‘If I can fasten but one cup upon him, with that which he hath drunk to-night already, he'll be as full of quarrel and offence as my young mistress' dog’. Iago schemes to get Cassio drunk because he knows Cassio will end up getting into a fight. Because he wants Cassio to get in trouble with Othello so that Desdemona will try to intervene on Cassio's behalf, which will make Othello

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