Othello as a Tragic Hero

Shakespeare utilizes methods, characters, language, structure and type to present Othello as terrible hero. He exposes his awful flaw, which subsequently causes his failure. Othello conforms to the Aristotelian concepts of catastrophe, of the honorable protagonist who goes through nonstop manipulation and sustains suffering, resulting in his ultimate failure due to hamartia.

All of these methods combine to provide a various understanding of the protagonist, as more of an atypical victim, exposed to the extreme truth of the society he longs to suit, instead of a typical hero.

An awful hero is a person who at first is well-respected and holds a reverence within society. They are of high ethical worth and are extremely ambitious in what they set out to attain. A single error or character defect can, however, bring them to ruin, with a loss of whatever that they possess. In the discussion of whether Othello fits the function of a tragic hero, the following concepts need to be thought about. To start with, as befitting a terrible hero, Othello holds a crucial function.

He is well-respected and admired by all. Secondly, through a character flaw and the included problem of external forces working versus him, he suffers a remarkable fall from grace. He loses all that he loved- his partner, his status, his position, and the regard held by others of him. The terrible hero comes up against a force or events which serve to bring this deadly defect to the surface area. In Hamlet, it is his indecision which pertains to the surface area as an outcome of his mom’s ‘o’er hasty’ remarriage.

It is interpreted that Othello’s deadly defect remains in reality jealously. However jealousy is not a feeling or state of being that can exist on its own. It needs other things to feed it and n Othello’s case this is insecurity. Othello remains in fact embeded in an incredibly racist duration and this does cause him to feel insecure and vulnerable, which renders him more available to Iago’s control. Iago does not hope on Othello’s jealousy, he hopes on his insecurity and utilizes Othello’s race and colour to place Othello in a bad light.

In Othello, it is the force of Iago’s callous manipulation and allegations versus Desdemona and Cassio which bring Othello’s gullibility to the surface area. Hamartia is a really important element of the play and Shakespeare utilizes it to better the audiences understanding of the events that are unfolding. Othello ignores the fact that Iago is making the most of his fatal flaw of jealousy. “Oh beware jealousy: it is the green-eyed which doth mock that which meet it, eat. The cuckold lies in happiness”.

This quote from Iago proves that he knows Othello more than Othello understands himself, and so, makes the most of his personal defect, utilizing it to his own, lethal benefit. In spite of Othello’s actions, there is a lesson to be found out and the audience are obliged to preserve some sensation of compassion towards him. The compassion of the audience towards Othello’s character is mainly due to his absence of understanding of the unforseen evils on the planet around him. These evils are personified by Iago. Othello’s nobility, morals, values and suitables, all play a part in the unravelling of his character.

Iago who’s equivocal however wicked deceptiveness and adjustment of Othello’s emotions provides the audience with a strong-willed however fragile character. Othello appears ill-equipped to understand a character such as Iago, and this gets the audiences compassion. If we are to accept that a tragic hero is one that possesses the image of valour, nobility and honour, however in weakness can not include the control of those mannerisms, then in the end we must come to the conclusion that he is certainly a terrible hero.

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