History YMMV / Othello

17th Feb '18 2:56:49 PM reconditarmonia
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* EveryoneIsJesusInPurgatory: The idea that Iago is {{Satan}} (allegorically, if not [[DevilInDisguise literally]]). He's a manipulator and tempter who [[FlawExploitation plays on everyone's flaws and fears]] while appearing to be an honest ManOfWealthAndTaste, and he talks Othello into renouncing God. Also, see the discussion under ValuesDissonance below, especially about the line "I am not what I am".

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* EveryoneIsJesusInPurgatory: The idea that Iago is {{Satan}} (allegorically, if not [[DevilInDisguise literally]]). He's a manipulator and tempter who [[FlawExploitation plays on everyone's flaws and fears]] while appearing to be an honest ManOfWealthAndTaste, and he talks Othello into renouncing God. Also, see the discussion under ValuesDissonance below, especially about the line "I am not what I am".



* ValuesDissonance: Now you have to understand - Elizabethan-era morality was different from modern morality. Iago says in the play "I am not what I am," and to a modern reader this means "I'm not what I act like." To an Elizabethan, it means something completely different: Iago is the ''absence'' of existence, which makes him the ultimate villain: evil in Elizabethan days wasn't considered to be a thing, it was considered to be the absence of God. Iago is the absence of God, making him even more evil than other Shakespearean villains.
** It's also worth mentioning that some readers won't understand that when Othello gives up Christianity, he super-damns himself to Hell; that's even worse than just being a pagan.
** This phrase has been taken by some scholars as a subversion of St Paul's "By the grace of God, I am what I am".
*** Or God's "I am who am" answer to Moses in Exodus 3:14.

to:

* ValuesDissonance: Now you have to understand - Elizabethan-era morality was different from modern morality. Iago says in the play "I am not what I am," and to a modern reader this means "I'm not what I act like." To an Elizabethan, it means something completely different: Iago is the ''absence'' of existence, which makes him the ultimate villain: evil in Elizabethan days wasn't considered to be a thing, it was considered to be the absence of God. Iago is the absence of God, making him even more evil than other Shakespearean villains.
** It's also worth mentioning that some
Some readers won't understand that when Othello gives up Christianity, he super-damns himself to Hell; that's even worse than just being a pagan.
** This phrase has been taken by some scholars as a subversion of St Paul's "By the grace of God, I am what I am".
*** Or God's "I am who am" answer to Moses in Exodus 3:14.
pagan.
17th Feb '18 2:55:06 PM reconditarmonia
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* FairForItsDay: In the original story on which ''Othello'' is based, the Moorish character doesn't even have a name, and it ends with Desdemona [[AuthorFilibuster lecturing the audience on why interracial marriage is evil.]] In his adaptation, Shakespeare gives the Moor a name and fully fleshes out his character into a sympathetic war hero. Shakespeare also adds the character of Iago to serve as the play's villain, a white man who manipulates Othello into a jealous rage ForTheEvulz. In fact, the only overtly racist elements of the play are spoken by unsympathetic characters.

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* FairForItsDay: In the original story on which ''Othello'' is based, the Moorish character doesn't even have a name, and it ends with Desdemona [[AuthorFilibuster lecturing the audience on why interracial marriage is evil.]] In his adaptation, Shakespeare gives the Moor a name and fully fleshes out his character into a sympathetic war hero. Shakespeare also adds the character of Iago to serve as the play's villain, a white man who manipulates Othello into a jealous rage ForTheEvulz. In fact, the only overtly racist elements of the play are spoken by unsympathetic characters.
31st Dec '17 10:37:53 AM Thorion
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* {{Narm}}: Desdemona having a few last words ''after'' being strangled to death. Considering how hard it is for death by strangulation to work, it's perhaps a case of RealityIsUnrealistic, and her final words where she refuses to blame Othello for her death, elevates her above someone fridged.

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* {{Narm}}: Desdemona {{Narm}}:
**Desdemona
having a few last words ''after'' being strangled to death. Considering how hard it is for death by strangulation to work, it's perhaps a case of RealityIsUnrealistic, and her final words where she refuses to blame Othello for her death, elevates her above someone fridged.
** In the Olivier film, the make-up used to make Olivier look black more often makes him look blue or grey.
26th Nov '17 5:21:14 PM Nakayama90
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Added DiffLines:

** One 2015 performance in Stratford had Iago being played by a black actor, adding some fascinating new dimensions to his rants against Othello.
14th Nov '17 2:21:51 AM JulianLapostat
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* {{Narm}}: Desdemona having a few last words ''after'' being strangled to death.
* NightmareFuel: There is something deeply unsettling about the character Iago. The idea that someone you trust implicitly could be so sociopathic that the first minor, unintentional sleight you perpetrate against them could lead them to utterly destroy your life for kicks is very creepy.
** Stabbing his own wife without the slightest hint of regret or reluctance.

to:

* {{Narm}}: Desdemona having a few last words ''after'' being strangled to death. Considering how hard it is for death by strangulation to work, it's perhaps a case of RealityIsUnrealistic, and her final words where she refuses to blame Othello for her death, elevates her above someone fridged.
* NightmareFuel: There is something deeply unsettling about the character Iago. The idea that someone you trust implicitly could be so sociopathic that the first minor, unintentional sleight you perpetrate against them could lead them to utterly destroy your life for kicks is very creepy.
**
creepy. Stabbing his own wife without the slightest hint of regret or reluctance.



* ValuesResonance / SomeAnvilsNeedToBeDropped: The play's main message (interracial marriage can be a loving one and racism can bring severe consequences) is still, if not more, relevant in today world of global traveling easier than Shakespeare's time.

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* ValuesResonance / SomeAnvilsNeedToBeDropped: ValuesResonance: The play's main message (interracial marriage can be a loving one and racism can bring severe consequences) is still, if not more, relevant in today world of global traveling easier than Shakespeare's time.time. Likewise, relationships are difficult and messy, and the play's rather overt criticism of the MadonnaWhoreComplex, and its portrayal of a loving husband can become domineering and abusive, and make it hard for the wife to resist, makes it a pretty realistic work.
3rd Jan '17 11:42:35 AM GothicProphet
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* TheWoobie: Yaya. She lives without a mother, her father is too strict with her, she's never had any friends and her only emotional support is following a (already disbanded) VisualKei band. Wow.

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* TheWoobie: Yaya. She lives without a mother, her father is too strict with her, she's never had any friends and her only emotional support is following a (already disbanded) VisualKei band. Wow.Wow.
----
30th Nov '16 9:07:56 PM ImperialMajestyXO
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** There are alternative views of Othello himself: Hero, fool or downright monster? The critic John Sutherland noted that in the original story, Shakespeare's source material, the unsympathetic Othello-equivalent plotted with the Iago-equivalent about how to kill his wife in a way that wouldn't leave a mark/would look like natural causes, so that he could escape punishment and could maintain his position. While Shakespeare's Othello is way more sympathetic overall, there's [[TheArtifact a few lines that indicate that he too attempted such a plan]], putting him in a worse light. Sutherland also discusses how despite making grandiose claims about his handkerchief, in other instances, Othello treats it like a normal handkerchief, and his later obsession with it has elements of BelievingTheirOwnLies.

to:

** There are alternative views of Othello himself: Hero, fool or downright monster? The critic John Sutherland noted that in the original story, Shakespeare's source material, the unsympathetic Othello-equivalent plotted with the Iago-equivalent about how to kill his wife in a way that wouldn't leave a mark/would look like natural causes, so that he could escape punishment and could maintain his position. While Shakespeare's Othello is [[AdaptationalHeroism way more sympathetic overall, overall]], there's [[TheArtifact a few lines that indicate that he too attempted such a plan]], putting him in a worse light. Sutherland also discusses how despite making grandiose claims about his handkerchief, in other instances, Othello treats it like a normal handkerchief, and his later obsession with it has elements of BelievingTheirOwnLies.
30th Nov '16 9:01:34 PM ImperialMajestyXO
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** Another one is that he didn't actually have a motive, and [[ForTheEvulz was doing it just because]]. The numerous motive that get discarded and contradicted don't help.

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** Another one is that he didn't actually have a motive, and [[ForTheEvulz was doing it just because]]. The numerous motive motives that get discarded and contradicted don't help.
30th Nov '16 9:01:14 PM ImperialMajestyXO
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** Another one is that he didn't actually have a motive, and was doing it just because. The numerous motive that get discarded and contradicted don't help.

to:

** Another one is that he didn't actually have a motive, and [[ForTheEvulz was doing it just because.because]]. The numerous motive that get discarded and contradicted don't help.
11th Nov '16 3:11:16 PM supergod
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http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/article_history.php?article=YMMV.Othello