Othello Notes

Foreword Notes -Chief argument for this Othello unit: William Shakespeare (1564-1616) is the greatest poet dramatist who has ever lived.->Whereas Mr. W says we have outgrown The Odyssey, we will never (when it comes to fiction) catch up to Shakespeare. (defined by cursive S)
Foreword Notes 2 -Avoid “no fear Shakespeare” because all the quizzes will come from the notes, not the “bald play” ->(avoid peeking ahead and avoid all summaries)
Foreword Notes 3 -Boys in the Elizabethan (Queen Elizabeth I died in 1603) and the Jacobean (King James’ rule began in 1603) theatre played all the female roles because it was improper for women to be on the stage.
Dramatis Personae (Cast) Males:Duke of Venice: Leader of the SenateBrabantio: A senator Other SenatorsGratiano: Brother to BrabantioLodovico: Kinsman of Brabantio [kinsman=relative]Othello: A noble Moor in the service of the Venetian state-hired generalCassio: His lieutenant-2nd in commandIago: His ancient-personal assistantRoderigo: A Venetian gentlemanMontano: Othello’s predecessor in the government of Cyprus-Gov. [governor?] of CyprusClown: Servant to OthelloFemales:Desdemona: Daughter to Brabantio and wife to Othello.Emilia: Wife to IagoBianca: Mistress to CassioExtras:Sailor, Messenger, Herald, Officers, Gentlemen, Musicians, and Attendants.Scene: Venice: a seaport in Cyprus
Foreword Notes 4 -Many good English teachers seem to use the EBARS (Everything But Actually Reading Shakespeare) method.->The key to a first time read through of Shakespeare is to first understand the plot.->Mr. W has 5 main reasons why S is so great…TBA (to be annouced)->Cannot really comprehend these 5 reasons except through serious digging. (vs. EBARS)
Foreword Notes 5 -Othello first performed in 1604-a fictional 15th century story set in Venice.->Shakespeare lifted the plot from Garibaldi Cinthio’s “Moor of Venice” (1565)->Considering that Shakespeare only invented 4 of the plots from his 36/37 plays (first gathered together in the First Folio [1623] 7 years after Shakespeare died), why is Shakespeare so great?
Study Set Format:Front:Quote:”Lorem Ipsum” Back:Explanation:”Dolor sit amet”Page Number and which character spoke the quote:”Ex. Iago pg.2″
Quote:”Who hast had my purseAs if the strings were thine, shouldst know of this.” Explanation:Q: Why does Iago have Roderigo’s money?Iago pg.1
Quote:”Three great ones of the city,In personal suit to make me his lieutenant,” Explanation:Iago upset because Cassio got promoted over him even though Iago got 3 top Venetians to recommend him to Othello.Iago pg.1
Quote:”Mere prattle [talk] without practice” Explanation:Cassio=college boyIago pg.2
Quote:’t is the cure of service,”Preferment goes by letter and affection” Explanation:Non-job related promotion.Iago pg.2
Quote:”I would not follow him then.” Explanation:So, quit!Roderigo pg.2
Quote: [Passage Excerpt]”You shall markMany a duteous and knee-crooking knave,That doting on his own obsequious bondageWears out his time, much like his master’s ass,For nought but provender*, and when he’s old, cashier’d: Whip me such honest knaves.” Explanation:Contrast to IagoProvender*: Dry food for animals [dry oats etc.]Iago pg.2
Quote: [3 quotes]”I follow him to serve my turn upon him:””And throwing but shows of service on their lords””And such a one do I profess myself.” Explanation:Iago will pretend to be loyal, and hurt Othello far more from the inside.Iago pg.2
Quote:”I am not what I am” Explanation: Paradox? True statement that appears to contradict itself.Iago pg.3
Quote:”Thick-lips” Explanation:Othello is black.Roderigo pg.3
Quote:”Call up her father,” Explanation:Lets awaken Brabantio and tell him his daughter Desdemona, eloped with Othello.Iago pg.3
Quote:”Though he in a fertile climate dwell,Plague him with flies:” Explanation:UnansweredIago pg.3
Quote:”An old black ramIs tupping your white ewe.” Explanation:Black man sleeping with your white daughter.Iago pg.3
Quote:”I have charged thee not to haunt about my doors:” Explanation:Roderigo obsessed with Desdemona.Brabantio pg.4
Quote:”My daughter is not for thee;” UnansweredBrabantio pg.4
Quote:”Your daughter and the Moor are now making the beast with two backs.” Another slur to provoke him (Brabantio) (Q: Is Iago a racist?)Iago pg.4
Quote:”This accident is not unlike my dream:” Explanation:An apparent dichotomy between his conscious and his subconscious mind (because he was SHOCKED by the actual news)see end pg.92 noteBrabantio pg.5
Quote:”Lead to the Sagittary*” Explanation:Roderigo, you bring Brabantio to the inn where Desdemona and Othello are staying.Sagittary*: Probably a well-known inn.Iago pg.5
Quote:”How got she out?” Explanation:Funny: Is she a pet? (Desdemona is 30!)Brabantio pg.6
Quote:”O, would you had had her!” Explanation:Brabantio deeply respects Othello and he despises Roderigo! (But nothing overcomes Brabantio’s belief that Othello is sub-human)Brabantio pg.6
Quote:”On, good Roderigo;” Explanation:Brabantio has changed his mind about RoderigoBrabantio pg.6
Quote:”With the little godliness I have,” Explanation:See 18b [bottom of pg. 18]- joking about his own atheism.Iago pg.6
Term:”Magnifico” Definition:Magnifico=BrabantioIago pg.6
Quote:”Hath in his effect a voice potentialAs double as the duke’s:” Explanation:Perhaps Brabantio more powerful than Duke who’s in charge (suspense about the coming conflict)Iago pg.6
Quote:”Let him do his spite:My services, which I have done the signiory,Shall out-tongue his complaints.” Explanation:Unworried, ultra self-confident about how good of a general he is – (nothing gets to Othello.)Othello pg.7
Quote:”But that I love the gentle Desdemona,” Explanation:Not just seducing her.Othello pg.7
Quote:”You have been hotly call’d for;” Explanation:Suspense because Othello most needed for war, at the moment he has perhaps committed the greatest “crime”Cassio pg.7
Quote:”Keep up your bright swords, for the dew will rust them.Good signior, you shall more command with yearsThan with your weapons.” Explanation:Pokes fun at their age. (Brabantio)Othello pg.8
Quote:”Damn’d as thou art, thou hast enchanted her;” Explanation:Major insult because he knows Othello has converted to Christianity.Brabantio pg.8
Quote:”Opposite to marriage that she shunn’dThe wealthy curled darlings of our nation,” Explanation:Desdemona turned down the best UU (upper upper class) boys in Venice=doesn’t want to get married-She thus didn’t want a husband.Brabantio pg.8
Quote:”The duke in council!In this time of the night! Bring him away:” Explanation:Brabantio knows his UU (upper upper class) friend the Duke will empathize, so lets all go to him.Brabantio pg.9
Quote:”Yet do they all confirmA Turkish fleet, and bearing up to Cyprus.” Explanation:Turks/Ottomites heading to Cyprus to take it from us.Second Senator pg.10
Quote: [3 quotes]”My daughter! O, my daughter””Dead””Ay, to me;” Explanation:Brabantio so upset that the senators think she died! (also he’s already rejected her and doesn’t even acknowledge her if Desdemona and Othello are together) -pretty racistIn order of spoken lines:1) Brabantio2) All senators and Duke3) Brabantiopg.11
Quote: [2 quotes]”The bloody book of law””Our proper son” Explanation:Dramatic irony (increases tension because Duke promises revenge on the perpetrator.)Duke pg.12
Term:”Moor” Explanation:Moor=North African=OthelloBrabantio pg.12
Quote:”Nothing, but this is so.” Explanation:Why are you asking the black guy?Brabantio pg.12
Quote:”to fall in love with what she fear’d to look on!” Q: How did Othello and Desdemona even meet? (worlds apart socially)
Footnote: Footnote:Q: Why learn literary and rhetorical strategy devices in English class?->A: To precisely explain how an author is being effective with his/her writing.->A: To reveal how an author is persuading the reader to think or act in a certain way.Footnote pg.12
Quote:”Without more certain and more overt testThan these thin habits and poor likelihoods” Explanation:Wants evidence (reasonable objection here)Duke pg.13
Quote:”Not only take away, but let your sentenceEven fall upon my life.” Explanation:Stakes his life on What he thinks Desdemona will say.Othello pg.13
Quote:”Her father loved me, oft invited me,” Explanation:Brabantio loved Othello’s war stories, respected his incredible skill, and invited him over.Othello pg.13
Quote:”This is to hearWould Desdemona seriously incline:But still the house-affairs would draw her thence;” Explanation:She [Desdemona] runs household because her mother is dead.Othello pg.14
Quote:She wish’d she had not heard it, yet she wish’dThat heaven had made her such a man:” Explanation:Wants to live the adventurous life.Othello pg.14
Quote:”If I had a friend that loved her,I should but teach him how to tell my story,And that would woo her.” Explanation:Flirting with him [Othello]Othello pg.14
Quote:”I think this tale would win my daughter too,” Explanation:Duke uses empathy because he knows Brabantio is ashamed-shows Duke is a smart bottom-line thinker.Duke pg.14
Quote:”If she confess that she was half the wooer,Destruction on my head, if my bad blameLight on the man!” Explanation:If Desdemona did half, then I’ll drop the criminal prosecution.Brabantio pg.15
Quote:”And so much duty as my mother show’dTo you, preferring you before her father,” Explanation:Did Brabantio run off with Desdemona’s mother? (Maybe because hinted at)Desdemona pg.15
Quote:”God be with you! I have done.Please it your grace, on to the state-affairs:” Explanation:Shakespeare provides an excellent example of a man’s SUPPOSED ability to “compartmentalize” his life.Brabantio pg.15
Quote:”Robb’d that smiles steals something from the thief;” Explanation:Make the best of it and Othello will feel bad for going behind your back.Duke pg.15
Quote: [2 quotes]”I crave fit disposition for my wife,””As levels with her breeding.” Explanation:I need UU (upper upper class) accommodations for my wife. Othello pg.16
Quote:”Be’t at her father’s” Explanation:”Proves Duke is not a racist because he’s ignorant of the gravity of the situation for Brabantio.Duke pg.16
Quote:”I’ll not have it so.” Explanation:I have no daughter (Brabantio disowned Desdemona)Brabantio pg.16
Quote:”May trumpet to the world: my heart’s subdued” Explanation:See 17t (top of pg.17)Desdemona pg.16
Quote:”Even to the very quality of my lord:I saw Othello’s visage in his mind,” Explanation:Very deep emotional connection that transcends romantic love. (I am Heathcliff! Wuthering Heights [1847])
Quote:”Look to her, Moor, if thou hast eyes to see:She has decieved her father, and may thee.” Explanation:Ambiguous=Desdemona cheating on OthelloBrabantio pg.18
Quote:”My life upon her faith!Honest Iago,” Explanation:I’ll bet my life she’ll be true. (faithful)Othello pg.18
Quote:” ‘t is in ourselves that we thus or thus. OUr bodies are gardens; to the which our wills are gardeners:” Explanation:Mind over matter, no outside spiritual influences existIago pg.18
Quote:”We have reason to cool our raging motions [emotions], our carnal stings, our unbitten [unbidden] lusts;” Explanation:[?]We have reason and our minds to control ourselves?UnansweredIago pg.18-19
Footnote: Footnote:Dr. Carl Jung: “What remains subconscious becomes destiny”
Quote:”Follow thou the wars; defeat thy favour* with an usurped beard;” Explanation:Disguise yourself [Roderigo] as a soldier and come with us!Iago pg.19
Quote:”Supersubtle Venetian” Explanation:Rhetorical Strategy.Iago pg.19