Othello Essay

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OTHELLO STUDY QUESTIONS
Act 1
1.1
1. What is Roderigo complaining about in the opening scene?
2. Why does Iago say he hates Othello so much, and what does he mean when he says: "In following him, I follow but myself."
3. What do Iago and Roderigo hope to accomplish by shouting insulting remarks about Othello and Desdemona under Brabantio's window?
1.2
1. What are Othello and Iago talking about at the opening of this scene?
2. When Iago warns Othello that Brabantio is "much-loved" and may try to separate him and Desdemona, what is Othello's answer and what does it suggest about Othello’s values?
3. How does Othello react when Brabantio orders him arrested?
4. What does Othello mean when he says: "My parts, my title, and my perfect soul/ Shall manifest me rightly."
5. According to Brabantio, how has Othello seduced his daughter?
6. Why is Brabantio opposed to having Othello for a son-in-law?
1.3
1. According to Othello, how did he and Desdemona fall in love? Why did they keep their love a secret?
2. Why has Othello's description been called "the Othello music"?
3. What is the point of Iago's "Virtue, a fig" speech and what is the "new" Elizabethan philosophy behind it?
4. How would you characterize the difference between the way Othello and Iago talk, both in their subject matter and their style?
5. At the end of this scene, Iago gives a second reason for hating Othello; what is this reason?
6. What did the city of Venice symbolize to members of the Elizabethan audience? What was the reputation of Venetian women?
Act 2
2.1
1. How does the setting of the play shift in this act? Describe the events surrounding Othello’s arrival in Cyprus.
2. What happens to the Turkish fleet?
3. Do Iago and Rodrigo really think that Cassio and Desdemona are lovers?
4. Whom does Iago suspect of having affairs with his wife? What grounds are there for his
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