Essays Othello Emilia

The Importance Of Emilia In Shakespeare's Othello

The Importance of Emilia in Shakespeare's Othello

In Othello the Moor, Shakespeare combines destiny with a fatal character flaw and that flaw is jealousy.  Shakespeare's tragedy allows one character to hold the key to the entire web he has spun and that character is Emilia. Emilia is the lone character who garners the knowledge to all circumstances of the events surrounding the characters in Othello the Moor.  Although other characters in the play are privy to certain details of the unfolding events, Emilia is the character that uses this knowledge to the benefit of the play.  Emilia's character is minor yet necessary.  Without her character the play would have no means of unraveling the confusion created by the author.  Emilia, wife of Iago, should be questioned of her loyalty and commitment to both her husband and her dear friend, Desdemona. 

The character of Emilia has only eight short parts in the play and of those parts only two are with the lead character of Othello.  Her character only interacts with Iago and Desdemona.  The first encounter between Othello and Emilia is in Act IV, Scene II.  Emilia assures Othello of Desdemona's true love and faithful manner.  Othello questioned Emilia "You have seen nothing, then?" "Nor ever heard, nor ever did suspect." (Shakespeare, Act IV, Scene II, page 1107) replied Emilia.  Emilia is telling the truth.  She knows for a fact that Desdemona has been faithful to her husband and that she loves him wholly.  But in Shakespeare's style of character development; Emilia is playing coy to the fact that her husband has lead Othello to believe differently.  Emilia is now the only character to have direct interaction with Othello, Desdemona and her husband and be knowledgeable of her husband's scheme.

The design of the play Othello the Moor is intricate and at times hard to follow but the author has a point to make and this becomes clear at the end of the play.  Shakespeare's point in Othello the Moor is that each individual has a destiny and fate is central in the lives of his characters.  Othello, a great warrior, is the lead character and the target for attack from a disgruntled soldier, Iago.  Iago plots with the aide of his wife, Emilia, to plant subtle notions of jealously in the case of Othello's expedient marriage to Desdemona.  Othello loves Desdemona and the same is true for Othello, but Iago successfully destroys the trust between the couple with a scheme in which Othello is unable to control his jealousy.  There are several other characters that Iago uses to set his plan into motion such as Roderigo, Bianca and Cassio.  Cassio is not so much a willing participant in the scheme of the play as he is a scapegoat (or object of irrational hostility; Webster's Dictionary, 652) to pin the entire plot on.  It is known that Emilia's character becomes crucial to the plot, as she is the most essential character to her husband's crusade to destroy Othello and Desdemona.   

Iago is angered at...

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Othello: Emilia The Grander One Essay

“Othello,” the tragic play written by William Shakespeare in 1601 has given a new outlook to women’s right during the time period when they had no voice to call their own. A tragic play about a jealous and manipulative man named Iago who does everything in his power to pursue and destroy the life of the protagonist, Othello. In the belief that Othello had wrongfully promoted someone else to the position that he claims to be rightfully his. In this play, unsure if this was the intention of Shakespeare, but Shakespeare’s two main female characters each embodies a completely different bias about women and feminism during the Elizabethan time period. Shakespeare encircles “Othello’s” plot and themes around its male characters all the while concurrently but indirectly shed light to the hidden anti-parallel dynamic among the livelihood of women. Desdemona, Othello’s wife, the more traditional female character, believes in putting her husband first and that love is all that matters. On the other hand, Emilia, Iago’s wife and one of Desdemona’s dearest friends, is portrayed as the stronger feminist in the play and believes in women’s right and that women are physically no different to men.
To place this assumption into retrospect, in Shakespeare time, from the 1558 to the 1600s, England society was ruled by Queen Elizabeth. Although a women took ownership of the country, in Elizabethan’s society married women and minor girls were entirely in the power of their husband and guardianship of their father. None the less, even after Elizabeth I took the throne, she was expected to wed and “have her rights to rule limited or completely take up by her husband” (Wagner, 21). Women living in a society built upon Renaissance beliefs were only meant to marry. Marriage life entitled them to massive responsibilities in managing everything in the house to child rearing. In addition, the expected roles of a woman are to be “silent, sexually chaste, and obedient to their husbands, fathers, brothers, and all men in general” (Gerlach et al). Based upon patriarchal rule it gave justification on women's subordination as the natural order because women were thought to be physiologically and psychologically inferior to men. Contrary to this belief beside Desdemona, there were some exceptions to the rule. Exceptions that manifest itself through the progression of the female character Emilia who develops to challenge Renaissance feminine ideals. Converse to the cultural standards of his time, Shakespeare portrays women stronger than they were thought to be. From a feministic spectacle, from the beginning to the end , Emilia progresses from a meeker and obedient wife to an outspoken strong-willed woman who embodies the beginning development of women in its adjusted roles in society.
To allude in the direction of my analysis, feminist criticism is a type of literary theory that wishes to point out the portrayal of women in a piece of literature. Feminists critics main...

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