Lago in Act 1 Scenes

Thus, by carrying out the role as a villain, he highlights the animalistic traits evident within people of the Venetian society. Although Iago is a white man who holds a fairly high status within Venetian society, he is crude and uncouth, often swearing and making references to the devil.

By using he imagery of being “plague[ed] with flies”, he makes reference to the devil, which is extremely inappropriate for a man held win such high regard. Furthermore, through this example, he associates himself with darkness and evil despite being a white man-who are supposedly considered pure and heathen. Also, by using the symbolism of “an old black ram”, he again associates himself with darkness and the devil. The “old black ram” symbolises the devil, which has the connotations of being evil, dark, and terrible.

Hence, making the distinction between light and darkness nclear and confusing, bringing to light the idea that darkness might be evident in light, and vice versa. Because Othello has defied his position in society as a black man by proving himself through his talents and his honourable actions, he is still discriminated by Iago, who voices out his disdain for him openly. He uses the symbolism of a “Barbary horse” to represent Othello.

This is extremely demeaning to Othello, a man of royal lineage who has carried himself off with only the utmost integrity and honour. This shows hat although he has many merits and is regal in his actions and demeanour, he is still associated with the stereotype that all blacks are barbarians. Furthermore, the sibilance within “the gross clasps ofa lascivious Moor” highlights the sinister and libidinous traits that Blacks are stereotypically known to possess.

This forms a disgusting impression of Othello, by simply Judging him according to his skin colour. Thus, through lagds characterisation of Othello through his ethnicity, he forms a racist impression of Othello and thus, is able to highlight the significance of one’s thnicity and how difficult, if not impossible, this boundary is to surpass. By agitating Brabantio, Iago makes a fool of the high ranking senator, and this brings forth the idea that people in position of power might not be worthy of it.

The run-on lines evident between “Sir, sir, sir-” and “But thou must need to be sure” shows how little Brabantio thinks of using his “spirit” and his “place” to punish Iago and Roderigo. This emphasizes the fact that people of power can carelessly make use of it to their own benefit. In Brabantio’s case, he threatens to punish them as they have disturbed his rest.

The triviality of their offence is mismatched with the threat that Brabantio has faced them with, showing that he has taken advantage of his power and thus, might not be worthy of it. Also, the run-on lines evident between “For thus does not think before acting. This is not appropriate for someone holding such a high position as he is expected to give thought before carrying out his actions, or the resultant effect of his carelessness might have great impact on society.

Hence, Iago shows the inadequacy of Brabantio and through this, questions the significance of people’s merits when being placed in power. Thus, through his mischief, Iago incites people to display their raw, animalistic traits, and displays his own as well. This results in the surfacing of problems within Venetian society that eventually accumulates to result in various tragedies. Hence, Iago is significant in masterminding the eventual tragedy, and the beginnings of this are evident in act 1 scene 1 and 2.

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