Audiences walk away with an idea of what domestic violence really looks like. In this reading, Othello returns to a barbarous state under pressure: lacking other means of persuasion he resorts to wanton violence and savage cruelty. They love each other completely, have no disagreements, and refuse to be separated. Othello finally does fall victim to Iago’s lies and Othello’s future actions are dictated by lies- ultimately proving Iago’s plan to work. Referring to the wounding of Cassio and the near slaying of Roderigo, Iago asserts to his wife: “This is the fruits of whoring” (V.i.). However, once he makes a decision, he is again the military man, decisive in action. Not simply a marker of barbarism, blood and the violence it connotes is a flexible form of self-fashioning that Othello uses to repair his understanding of the world shattered by Desdemona's purported infidelity and to negotiate this tension between stability and fluidity. Ray Chong Nee, who plays Othello in the upcoming Bell Shakespeare production, wants the conversation to turn to something he believes is more urgent: domestic violence. Shakespeare shows us that Iago is dishonest and disloyal in the most blatant of ways. Abusive relationships typically start out blissfully and that is why abuse victims often feel a sense of commitment to the relationship. As a result, Othello and Desdemona find unleashed upon them, in the shape of Iago, the venomous rage of a society whose foundations are rocked by the mere fact of their marriage. “Abuse Defined.” 2020. https://www.thehotline.org/is-this-abuse/abuse-defined/. can “force the reality of the situation upon the audience – ultimately bringing these articles to life.” (Vandy Performs) Shakespeare, by capturing something innately human, allows us to adapt his writing in ways that make it relevant to our world today. 310-311). The grateful and humble gets an injury, whereas the thankful and malicious gets respect. This tragic play shows how jealousy and envy can overpower a person's mind and lead them to wreak havoc on others. Blog. Only Iago voices an explicitly stereotypical view of Othello, depicting him from the … “Amid a Reckoning with Toxic Masculinity, Seeing ‘Othello’ In A New Light.” WBUR. Violence in Shakespeare: Suicide, Murder, and Combat in Shakespeare's Plays Introduction Elizabethan and Jacobean audiences reveled in shocking drama. Iago states, “And practising upon his peace and quiet/ Even to madness” (II.1. In fact, violence is a major theme in both Othello and O, without violence, neither text would be a tragedy but instead tales of conversation and discussion. Violence in Othello. Violence in Othello In William Shakespeare’s Othello violence can be found in several different ways. Sexual relationships in Othello are the locus of two types of conflicts - same sex conflict as well as male-female conflicts - upon which many other themes like themes of sex and violence, love and hate, honor and dishonesty, loyalty and betrayal, trust and suspicion may be explored. This paper follows the critical lines of feminism and psychoanalysis to argue that Othello is a conflict between female characters' moral voices and male figures' treacherous voices. “Domestic Violence and Abuse.” 2019. https://www.helpguide.org/articles/abuse/domestic-violence-and-abuse.htm, National Domestic Violence Hotline. Violence can be expressed physically, mentally, and verbally. VUTheatre’s production of Othello highlights the domestic violence presented in the play written by William Shakespeare, with Desdemona playing the main role of victim. This tragic play shows how jealousy and envy can overpower a person’s mind and lead them to wreak havoc on others. Talking about domestic violence, reading or writing articles, creating awareness months can only go so far, many need to experience a situation in a visceral way. Scenes of bloodshed were staged with maximum realism. But Iago’s plan works and he makes Othello love, thank, and … Othello's insecurities are so close to the surface that a few words of hint and innuendo from Iago can tear the confident exterior and expose his fears, desires, and tendency to violence. Othello, by contrast, is a noble figure of great authority, respected and admired by the duke and senate of Venice as well as by those who serve him, such as Cassio, Montano, and Lodovico. As a public leader, Othello experiences delight and success … Othello being African already makes him an outsider and highlights racism in Venice. Talking about domestic violence, reading or writing articles, creating awareness months can only go so far, many need to experience a situation in a visceral way. Othello cannot stand uncertainty; it drives him to destroy his sanity. “Domestic Violence and Abuse.” 2019. https://www.helpguide.org/articles/abuse/domestic-violence-and-abuse.htm. “Othello and Domestic Violence.” Vanderbilt University. February 8, 2019. https://www.wbur.org/cognoscenti/2019/02/08/art-othello-in-the-me-too-era-leigh-gilmore, HelpGuide.org. Many characters in "Othello" are either trustworthy or trusting but few possess both of these desirable qualities. However, Othello is in too emotional a state to listen, and he has already ordered the lieutenant's murder. Sound off in the comments! Violence in Othello In William Shakespeare's Othello violence can be found in several different ways. impacted you? In the end, Othello does not believe Desdemona. Drawing on the concepts of Jungian and Freudian psychoanalysis, I argue that the association of female speech and silence with sexuality is a projection of misogynist and racist discourses. Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email. Othello enters Desdemon’a bedroom with the intention to kill her and does so in a violent and deeply personal way. Othello was married to Desdemona, the … Nelson uses the setting of an American high school due to its violent culture and makes references to the Columbine high school massacre to show this. Theatre allows us to do that. However, the abuse has to start somewhere and that is typically with emotional abuse and/or threats. In William Shakespeare's Othello violence can be found in several different ways. 17, How to Think Like Shakespeare | Book Review. Domestic abuse often intensified from threats and verbal abuse to physical violence (Smith & Segal, 2017). Immediately after he slaps her, she says “I have not deserved this.” (A4.S1) After this, she remains an obedient wife until he comes to kill her. Gilmore, Leigh. In an attempt to encourage the audience to become more proactive about domestic violence, VUTheatre’s Othello portrays Desdemona as a powerless character whose main function is to absorb men’s anger. Violence can be expressed physically, mentally, and verbally. Iago states, “And practising upon his peace and quiet/ Even to madness” (II.1. 310-311). Even then, he feels that, had she been guilty, he would have been justified. Firstly, when Othello strikes his wife in public, then when he kills her, and when Iago stabs his wife, Emilia. Post was not sent - check your email addresses! This tragic play shows how jealousy and envy can overpower a person's mind and lead them to wreak havoc on others. Othello, by contrast, is a noble figure of great authority, respected and admired by the duke and senate of Venice as well as by those who serve him, such as Cassio, Montano, and Lodovico. If so, how? Why your go-to-market strategy should be industry focused; Dec. 1, 2020. A modern view of family violence leaves Othello as nothing but a killer acting out the narrative of gendered violence of the 16th century Venetian society … However, he does not tell her what she did wrong. There are three key points where we see violence against women in “Othello”. Iago’s treachery and actors of betrayal become the core reason behind a series of domestic violence as depicted by Othello against the wife and also as depicted by Brabantio against Othello (Andrew 34). Domestic Violence in Othello on YP.com. She blames herself, believes she can fix the situation, and is always on eggshells. This tragic play shows how jealousy and envy can overpower a person's mind and lead them to wreak havoc on others. The play holds many elements of what justifies it to be revolving around characters who are middle class, engaged in their private life affairs. Domestic Violence in Othello. Revel in the Joy & Absurdity of Shakespeare, TW: emotional abuse, physical abuse, and murder. In the wake of the #MeToo movement and a growing awareness of domestic violence issues, it makes sense for recent production of Othello to highlight the abuse Desdemona endures. ‘For if such actions may have passage free,’ Brabantio warns the Venetian Senate, ‘Bond-slaves and pagans shall our statesmen be’ (1.2.98-9). Cassio, who has always given loyal and responsible service to his general Othello gets hatred and violence in return; but silly Othello rewards the terribly evil lago with love and trust in return to his betrayal. This tragic play shows how jealousy and envy can overpower a person’s … Vandy Performs. Firstly, when Othello strikes his wife in public, then when he kills her, and when Iago stabs his wife, Emilia. Female Selfhood and Male Violence in English Renaissance Drama: A View from Mary Wroth's Urania / Akiko Kusunoki Invasive Procedures in Webster's The Duchess of Malfi / Ellen Caldwell The "Erring Barbarian" and the "Maiden Never Bold": Racist and Sexist Representations in Othello / Sara Deats He is a well-respected African general in the Venice army and is happily married to Desdemona, a white woman. Iago is the character who shows least signs of loyalty in the play. At first, the marriage seems picture perfect (National Domestic Violence Hotline). October 24, 2016. https://www.smh.com.au/entertainment/theatre/killing-desdemona-the-domestic-violence-in-othello-20161024-gs98kg.html, Gilmore, Leigh. There are three key points where we see violence against women in “ Othello ”. Theater, as a visual art, has the unique ability to make audiences face realities they may never face. Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. This is not unusual in abusive situations. This keeps her constantly on eggshells, another sign of abuse. Violence can be expressed physically, mentally, and verbally. “Amid a Reckoning with Toxic Masculinity, Seeing ‘Othello’ In A New Light.” WBUR. October 10 2016. https://my.vanderbilt.edu/vandyperforms/2016/10/othello-and-domestic-violence/, Click to share on Pinterest (Opens in new window), Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window), Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window), Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window), Click to share on Tumblr (Opens in new window), Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window), The Truth About Prince Hal | Breaking Bard Ep. Although Desdemona knew she did nothing to make Othello hit her, she followed his orders and left the room to no longer offend him (Nadelhaft, 1984). Site Development: University Web Communications, The Suppliants by Jaylen, Shreya, and Kenzie, Vanderbilt Baseball by Richard Ficek, Jordan Lee, Cam Nix, and Courtney Smith, Vanderbilt Baseball Game by William Caldwell and Jake Eder, Anastasia by Abbey Roberts, Jeri Katz, and Reghan Hovell-Wilkins, Vanderbilt Men’s Basketball Game by Virginia Green, Patrick Raby, and John Augenstein, Site Development: University Web Communications. In saying this to line Emilia, Iago clearly means that Desdemona’s alleged adultery has led to violence. “Killing Desdemona: the domestic violence in Othello.” The Sydney Morning Herald. It isn’t long before the abuse follows a too familiar pattern by escalating “from threats and verbal assault to violence.” (HelpGuide.org) He strikes Desdemona across her face in front of a crowd of people. In Act 4 Scene 1 Othello publicly hit Desdemona (Shepherd, 2016; Nadelhaft, 1984). This is the last time we see Desdemona stand up to Othello before the final scene. TW: emotional abuse, physical abuse, and murder. February 8, 2019. https://www.wbur.org/cognoscenti/2019/02/08/art-othello-in-the-me-too-era-leigh-gilmore. “Killing Desdemona: the domestic violence in Othello.” The Sydney Morning Herald. However, the audience also understands Iago’s words in another light. Violence in Othello In William Shakespeare's Othello violence can be found in several different ways. Prezi Video + Unsplash: Access over two million images to tell your story through video Othello is the main character in the play Othello by William Shakespeare. Although Desdemona knew she did nothing to make Othello hit her, she followed his orders and left the room to no longer offend him (Nadelhaft, 1984). If Othello’s colour becomes slightly problematic in the second half of the play it is because Iago’s racism is insidious; he destroys the black–white harmony that existed and makes the hero behave in a way that we feel is unnatural for him (Othello finds it almost impossible to reject and destroy Desdemona; for Iago violence comes easily). The actor playing Othello, Ray Chong Nee, was quoted as saying “We all agreed that her death shouldn’t be softened. Blake, Elissa. Violence in Othello In William Shakespeare's Othello violence can be found in several different ways. It should be violent and hard to watch.” (Blake) Pushing the boundaries and making audiences uncomfortable can make it more impactful. “Solely reading about domestic violence may not enrage readers to the point of actually mobilizing for change,” but Othello can “force the reality of the situation upon the audience – ultimately bringing these articles to life.” (Vandy Performs) Shakespeare, by capturing something innately human, allows us to adapt his writing in ways that make it relevant to our world today. It’s not until he realizes he was wrong that he shows any sort of remorse. In the wake of the #MeToo movement and a growing awareness of domestic violence issues, it makes sense for recent production of Othello to highlight the abuse Desdemona endures. HelpGuide.org. In Act 4 Scene 1 Othello publicly hit Desdemona (Shepherd, 2016; Nadelhaft, 1984). Othello finally does fall victim to Iago’s lies and Othello’s future actions are dictated by lies- ultimately proving Iago’s plan to work. (HelpGuide.org) Because she doesn’t know why he’s mad, she can’t possibly figure out what will set him off next. Violence in Othello In William Shakespeare’s Othello violence can be found in several different ways. Violence can be expressed physically, mentally, and verbally. Othello is an essentially public man placed within the framework of a domestic tragedy; the Turkish invasion and machinations of the Venetian state provide the backdrop to an essential private heartbreak. “Othello and Domestic Violence.” Vanderbilt University. She hopes for the relationship they had before. National Domestic Violence Hotline. This paper follows the critical lines of feminism and psychoanalysis to argue that Othello is a conflict between female characters' moral voices and male figures' treacherous voices. 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