Race And Otherness In Act 1 Of Othello

1006 Words5 Pages
Act 1 of Othello is crucial in establishing the main themes which pervades the play making them particularly pertinent in ones understanding of the whole of the play. It introduces various key themes such as the race and otherness, explores the idea of deception and manipulation through its complex, ambiguous characters and establishes the setting of Venice. One of the key themes explored in the first act of Othello is that of witchcraft and devilish magic and its relation to Othello’s race and otherness. The act explores the concept of Othello’s skin colour and how it effects other characters perception of him. Shakespeare also introduces the theme of appearance Vs reality with the introduction of the mendacious Iago contrasting with Othello as his appearance is described as being an ‘old, black ram’ with numerous remarks regarding to his appearance in the first act the importance placed on his appearance by the other characters is notable and Iago’s difference…show more content…
Due to this otherness Othello encounters difficulties after enchanting the white Desdemona where their relationship is viewed upon as a result of ‘foul charms’ by Brabantio who is incredulous after hearing about this relationship. The whole dynamic of Othello’s and Desdemona’s relationship is seen as unnatural by Brabantio suggesting that Othello is an ‘abuser’ returning to the theme of deceit and the use of witchcraft as a means for this deceit. Throughout the whole play Othello is seen as an outsider and his attempts to assimilate into Venetian culture are ultimately set up to fail by the events of the first act and the inevitability of this failure is made obvious by the attitudes of various characters towards Othello. In order for one to assimilate into a culture or society they look to marry someone from

More about Race And Otherness In Act 1 Of Othello

Open Document