Kaylin (The Re-Read Queen)'s Reviews > Othello

Othello by William Shakespeare
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it was ok
bookshelves: classics, plays-and-scripts

Here's my thing:

Who am I supposed to root for?

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Othello? Who doesn't seem to know how to communicate with anyone? He gets so jealous and infuriated by conjecture about his wife (of less than a week, I believe) that he has a seizure. Then proceeds to treat said wife absolutely horribly?

Desmonda? In her first speech, she defends her marriage to Othello then does nothing else. She seemed constantly determined to please everyone. Joking with Iago, defending Cassio, repeatedly proclaiming her love for Othello-- she never had any motivation outside of the happiness of whoever she was with.

Cassio? Who doesn't have any personality outside of reacting the exact way Iago predicts he will?

Roderigo? The 14th century "nice-guy" who complains about being "friend-zoned" the entire play, and seems incapable of thinking for himself?

I couldn't even root for the villain. Iago all-but admits he has no clear-cut motive, and he spends large amounts of time detracting from the plot to illustrate the reasons he hates women.

I guess I still prefer Shakespeare's comedies to his tragedies. While this clearly was a well-constructed situation and a true tragedy-- I just didn't care at all?

Also, my childish brain went to this every time I read Iago's name:
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Reading Progress

January 23, 2017 – Shelved
January 23, 2017 – Shelved as: to-read
February 12, 2017 – Started Reading
February 22, 2017 – Shelved as: classics
February 22, 2017 – Shelved as: plays-and-scripts
February 22, 2017 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-4 of 4 (4 new)

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message 1: by Fatima (new)

Fatima Farhad Agree with you on everything except Iago, his character is the only one well-constructed. You can't figure out his motives because there isn't a single one, there a lot of them and he keeps shifting the focus from one to another according to the requirements of his machination.


Kaylin (The Re-Read Queen) Fatima wrote: "Agree with you on everything except Iago, his character is the only one well-constructed. You can't figure out his motives because there isn't a single one, there a lot of them and he keeps shiftin..."

This is a good point, at this point I would honestly have to re-read and spend more focus on his character. I just remember lots of mysogynistic monolouges and convoluted schemeing. Iirc he does admit to not having an exact motive; and this is interesting, but when I already couldn't relate or understand most of the characters, felt frustrating.


message 3: by Audrey (new)

Audrey Tragedies often don't have real heroes. I think these plays just serve as a lesson to others, like "communication is vital to a good marriage."


message 4: by Arden (new)

Arden I completely agree!


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