Othello Victims Speech (Desdemona)
Thank you for that warm welcome. I am honored to be invited here to this workshop on ‘interpretations of Shakespeare’s characters’. EMILIA: “O, who hath done this deed?” DESDEMONA: “No one; I myself. Farewell.” The brief scripted speech and claim of guilt signify the loss of strength in Desdemona’s last words as she dies. This is simply the first example of many that show that the statement ‘Victims are actually the makers of their own death’ holds true in relation to that of the character Desdemona in the play Othello.
Particularly Desdemona’s defects, her betrayal, her manipulation and denying her initial impulse can be seen in correspondence to textual proof from the play in addition to Oliver Parker’s 1995 movie. Plays are implied to be seen, preformed and analyzed, so how is Desdemona genuinely provided? Dictionary. com defines a victim as ‘an individual who is deceived or cheated, as by their own feelings or ignorance and even by the dishonesty of others’ and death is specified as ‘failure or termination’ by the english dictionary. By these meanings we can conclude that Desdemona is a victim, which her demise does happen.
However is she the maker of her own demise? Othello, is a tragedy. Much like much of Shakespeare’s plays, the catastrophe is seen by the characters loss of prospective greatness through their flaws and choices. Critic G. Wilson Knight thinks that Desdemona’s potential for achievement were her qualities that contained her innocence and simpleness. Nevertheless they then became her flaws and the culmination of them subdue her. She ends up being unpredictable and immature and for that reason ignorant in her choices. Knight composed that we first see this character modification in her choice to elope with Othello at the start of the play.
According to Knight she willingly gets in the ‘unknown seas of marital relationship with a secret of guy’. DESDEMONA: “It yet hath felt no age, nor recognized no grief”, this quote simply demonstrates how unskilled and gullible Desdemona was. Desdemona’s deceitful side is revealed early when she betrays her father, swearing her loyalty to Othello. BRABANTIO: “O treason of the blood!” DESDEMONA: “A lot i difficulty that i may profess/ Due to the Moor my lord”. This quote reveals her modification of obligation and her statement, but out of what? The majority of would state love, critic Jan Kott would state otherwise.
Knights view is enhanced by Kott’s belief that Desdemona was sexually obsessed and that she wed Othello out of lust and not love. In the Parker film different techniques have actually been utilized to highlight Desdemona’s defects. The cover of the movie itself shows a story of desire rather than love along with the costuming which shows Desdemona in an intriguing red dress. This intertextual referral to the scarlet woman supports Kott’s belief that desdemona was a female who acted on her naive sensations of desire rather than her claims of love.
Desdemona’s capability to control is seen in concerns to Cassio when she states DESDEMONA: “Tell him i have actually moved/ my lord on his behalf” offering false hope to Cassio that his relationship with Othello is repaired. When Iago controls those around him in the play many people challenge his methods, yet no one questions Desdemona. While her intentions may have been honorable, they way she performed herself contributed to her ultimate downfall. A greater example of her adjustment is when she mentions DESDEMONA: “it is not lost, however what and if it were? to Othello, lying about the lost handkerchief as well as acting to see how her husband might react. This is a screen of the theme appearance vs. truth as she reveals her fake face to Othello. This likewise result in his doubt in the future in the play, if he could not trust her then why should he trust her now? In Act 2 DESDEMONA says: “O, the majority of lame and impotent conclusion! Do not discover of him, Emilia, believed he be thy hubby.” In this she is informing Emilia to be mindful with Iago as she thinks there is something about him that can not be relied on.
But, by this comes the concern, if Desdemona has the ability to see Iago’s defects in Act 2 why does she later believe them herself? Iago informs her to pursue the case with Cassio and she complies. We see this in Act 3 as Desdemona exasperates Othello by persisting to talk about Cassio. Her repeated comments provide Othello the premises to believe what Iago has been telling him about the relationship in between Desdemona and Cassio. DESDEMONA: “I have actually been talking with a suitor here,/ A man that languishes in your annoyance.” This quote is an example of her provocation along with her effort to control Cassio and Othello.
Had she put in the time to think by herself or spoken to those she declared to trust with all her heart, like Othello her husband, her death might have been avoided. The Parker analysis concurs with this as throughout the majority of the film we only see fleeting minutes of lust in between Desdemona and Othello and no real moments of deep conversation. Desdemona’s habits displayed in the Parker production is erotic. She is revealed talking to Cassio really carefully and intimately, whispering in his ear while she awaits her partner to return from war. This scene is carefully followed by a clip of a red sky representing lust, blood, and doom.
Foreshadowing that Desdemona’s minutes with Cassio and her decisions in regards to him will eventually add to her failure. The way she acts in front of everyone, with her other half and with Cassio are really similar. This shows how she has the ability to affect those around her. Revealing her ability, and painting her as the maker of her own death. In conclusion the conclusion of all the elements that make up the character Desdemona cause her failure, therefore did the choices she made. As she understood her effect and what she was doing it is evident she was a victim who made her death.