Critical Analysis of the Tragedy of Othello Essay (Critical Writing)

September 29, 2020 by Essay Writer


The stage directions in the Tragedy of Othello are realistic. The drama is based on the three characters namely Othello, Lago, and Desdemona. However, the directions are based on the modest approach to a drama that is located in two diverse worlds known as the Venice and Cyprus.

Given that the play had no subplot, the play directions tend to budge in terms of place, time, and action once the theme is shifted to Cyprus. The stage directions are the realistic forms of domestic tragedy. However, it does not require supernatural instructions to hook the audience.

The language used to give directions to the audience is natural and restrained. The dialogue reflects the reality of a society that is under pressure from the usual hassles of life. The dialogue simply involves a husband, wife, and a scoundrel. This is a short critical analysis examining the play from multiple perspectives. That is, how I experience it as a silent reader and as a text for public performance.

Critical analysis

The drama is ahead of its time. The play presents the audience with a tragic hero of color. The dialogue sounds natural and does not involve the provocation of laughter in the audience. The imagination of the audience is captured by the fact that the drama involves interracial marriage that was unfathomable in those days.

Further, the drama involves a bed in which murder is eventually committed. The murder is committed on stage. The dialogue is made very realistic by the presence of the villain who appears to possess more lines than the disastrous hero. All the meetings were bold, contentious, and very modern.

The characters in Othello are acting like normal people pursuing everyday undertakings. Othello becomes the victim of a domestic calamity. He is the victim to an envious monster of jealousy (Langis 61). He finds it hard to adjust to the marital existence having been in the armed forces for long. In fact, he turns out to be a chauvinist and protective. Although he is good in the military, he is bad at home. Othello appears to be an awful husband. The play shows that Othello is always imploring for a brawl. Just like Simpson, he murders the wife after being informed that she has been cheating on him.

Typically, this would be the reaction of a husband convinced that the wife has been cheating on him. Such incidents have been happening in the society. Thus, this appears as the main theme of incompatibility in the armed forces of heroism and love in the drama. That s, it involves the risk of isolation. The killing of Desdemona is an evidence of the frustration that Othello is going through after being cheated and convinced by Lago to trust that his wife was cheating on him.

Lago cannot convince the audience in whatever he says given that the audiences have insight into his character though it is not evident to the actors. He pretends to be morally upright so that his intention of ensuring the downfall of Othello is well covered. By planting the handkerchief in Casio’s house, it is an indication of conspiracy between him and the wife (Lankey 6).

The stage businesses are illustrations of what take place in real life. The visual plainness displayed on the stage according to the stage directions focuses directly on the actors and a fascinating account of retaliation, gullibility, and jealousy. The catastrophic downfall of the noble warrior is a common phenomenon in many societies plagued by jealousy and vengeance. Lago at times hilariously expresses his intentions for the murderous abhorrence of Othello.

By acting as a director and producer in charge of staging the tragedy of the Othello, I would ensure the actors bring out the rhetoric of the drama. However, before the action of the drama, Brabantion had been kind to the Moor (Horman 112). He allowed Othello and his daughter to discuss more about him since he was mesmerized by his slave stories. Upon the revelation that the Desdemona had eloped with Othello, his feeling altered abruptly.

He started wondering where he would find and arrest him. However, the rhetoric does not come out clearly even when he is called a thief in the street. Instead, Othello is accused of abusing Desdemona. In deep rhetoric, Brabantio states that his house is not a grange. This meant that he does not keep horses. In fact, this is founded on the fact that the daughter had eloped with a man of color. I would insist that the actors should bring out the rhetoric clearly to sensitize the audience about racism.

Numerous elements would probably catch my attention as a critic of the play. The geographical symbolism represented by the two locations of the play would be important. For instance, Venice is represented by Lago while Cyprus represented by Desdemona. Othello represents the third location called Turks.

This emerged upon considering that the location was only mentioned as a war zone with the other two characters. Venice was at the time of writing the play one of the most influential and cosmopolitan European cities. Indeed, it is symbolic of the white Christian European morals.

The Senate and the Duke ran the city. These were symbols of power and order. On the contrary, Cyprus is very unpredictable and natural. It was isolated from the colonial government. Besides, it is an armed forces premeditated target for both Turks and Venetians. The island is very symbolic of Desdemona. There is struggle to dominate her between Othello and Lago.


Othello involves a variety of actors. In fact, actors such as Othello, Lago and Desdemona dominate the play. In the play, the setting incorporates jealousy and gullibility while such traits rule the society. The short critical analysis examines the play from multiple perspectives. That is, how I experience it as a silent reader, and how I experience it as a text for public performance.

Works Cited

Horman, Sidney. When the Theater Turns to Itself: The Aesthetic Metaphor in Shakespeare, Lewisburg, PA: Bucknell University Press, 1981. Print.

Langis, Park. Passion, Prudence, and Virtue in Shakespeare Drama, West Newton: Continuum, 2007. Print.

Lankey, Julie. Othello, Cambridge City, UK: Cambridge University Press, 2007.Print.

Read more
Leave a comment
Order Creative Sample Now
Choose type of discipline
Choose academic level
  • High school
  • College
  • University
  • Masters
  • PhD

Page count
1 pages
$ 10