Explain the effect of dramatic techniques employed by Shakespeare in the construction of the pivotal Scene 3 in Act 3. Act 3 Scene 3 is one of the most important and pivotal scenes in Othello, where Iago speaks meticulously and thoroughly with Othello, planting the seeds of suspicion ad jealousy in Othello’s mind which ultimately leads to the tragic events that occur in the latter parts of the play.
Shakespeare’s diction for Iago arouses the idea of suspicion and jealousy in Othello; at first, Iago speaks only the word “jealousy” (167) fixing it into Othello’s imagination then reminds Othello of Desdemona’s deception of her own father “She did deceive her father, marrying you, / And when she seemed to shake and fear your looks, / She loved them most” further planting seeds of suspicion into Othello’s mind as the implication is clear, where Shakespeare’s choice of words, does not need Iago to state it’s true meaning: If Desdemona can deceive her own flesh and blood, she can easily deceive her husband.
However, as soon as Iago states his thoughts with Othello, he back tracks what he says “But I am much to blame.
/ I humbly do beseech you of your pardon / For too much loving you” bringing about once again Iago’s duplicitous nature. Dramatic irony is used not only in Act 3, Scene 3 but throughout the entire play. Iago is constantly referred to as honest, however time and time again, Iago lies, playing with his words to seek out his own revenge.
Shakespeare writes “ Also, Shakespeare uses the technique of foreshadowing… Desdemona’s lines at the beginning of the scene are prophetic: “thy solicitor shall rather die / Than give thy cause away. ” (27-8) This reminds the audience / reader that this play is in fact a tragedy alluding to the idea that most characters are bound to fall. Furthermore, Othello says “Perdition catch my soul… / Chaos is come again” (90-2) there is an element of prophecy in this statement, as, metaphorically, damnation will soon catch Othello, whilst chaos will soon replace order in his life.
During Othello’s soliloquy, Shakespeare uses a rage of imagery emphasising the appalling change in Othello. There is only one thing Othello is certain, that is the “exceeding honesty” (260) of Iago, another example of dramatic irony. The end of the scene is the climax of Othello, as Othello, convinced of his wife’s infidelity, is fixed in his course, to seek “a capable and wide revenge” (460) on Desdemona ensuring the disastrous endings of this tragedy unavoidable. Othello makes a black vow with Iago
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