Flashcards in Othello Context Deck (26)
What was social structure based on?
The chain of being, if anyone tried to alter their position it led to Devine punishment. If someone lost reason they became animal
2 aspects goodness and evil the same as human nature
External appearances was an indicator of what lay within
Belief you are better than the gods- divine punishment
Shames the devil. Lying is Imitating the devil
Possessions of men
Who was the first black actor to play othello and why
Ira Aldridge 1833 because original actor collapsed
Played othello 3 times bringing new Ora- 3rd time he played a character trying to overcome the struggle of race
First black actor to play othello in America
Who was associated with witchcraft and black magic
What was the original title of the play?
“The tragedy If othello the moor is Venice”
Oxymoron- moor couldn’t be Venetian- conflict of othello
Barbary coast- North African descent or Muslim
The Turkish threat
Christianity threatened by Islam the ottoman Turks launched powerful operations against Christians from the 15th century
The Turkish invasion of 1570-71 when othello is set gave ottoman control of Cyprus
Conquered all non European areas
The siege of Famagusta 1570-71
The city surrendered to Turks but agreement broken by Turkish commander who tortured and killed Venetian commander despite his surrender. (Mirrors Iago to othello)
Who was the religious schism between?
Catholic and Protestant- othello is divided between religion
Theme of micro and macro environments
London divides into city of London and Westminster. London run by Protestant puritans
Older characters in Shakespeare’s latter tragedies
Older characters descent into madness as in king Lear. Tests to see which daughter he should transfer power too. Also a transfer of power between othello and Iago when he descends into madness
Not the usual pattern or structure of order disorder order
Begin in medias res
Othello is overthrown literally and metaphorically
Under both monarchs Elizabeth and James there were plots to overthrow them
When was othello wrote
Which monarch made himself head of church so he could divorce his wife
Henry 8th- creates schism
Venice’s political structure
Independent state, senate, strong exports and imports.
Not necessarily less chaotic- produced iago- appearances vs reality
What was the difference in the folio edition of the play?
“Base Indian” othello compares himself with is printed as “base ludean” or “judean” could refer to the biblical betrayal of Jesus by Judas iscariot and furthers the analogy between Desdemona and Christ
What happed when Laurence Oliver played iago in 1938?
He kissed othello on the lips at the end of Act 3 scene 3