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Othello Paperback – Aug 1 2004
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If anything, Othello has increased its stature as one of Shakespeare's greatest tragedies ever since it was first written, between 1603 and 1604, due to the victimisation suffered by its tragic hero, Othello, as a result of his skin colour. Othello is a "noble Moor", a North African Muslim who has converted to Christianity and is deemed one of the Venetian state's most reliable soldiers. However, his ensign Iago harbours an obscure hatred against his general, and when Othello secretly marries the beautiful daughter of the Venetian senator Brabanzio, Iago begins his subtle campaign of vilification, which will inevitably lead to the deaths of more than just Othello and Desdemona.
An extraordinary play, both for its dramatic economy and power as well as its remarkable language, from Othello's bombastic "traveller's history" to Desdemona's elegiac "willow song", the play raises uncomfortable questions about ongoing questions of not only racial identity but also sexuality, as Othello and Desdemona's sexual relationship becomes the voyeuristic site of Iago's attempt to destroy them. Particularly fascinated with the question of what it means to "see", Othello also contains one of the greatest tragic death scenes in all of Shakespeare, with Othello's final identification with "a malignant and a turbaned Turk". --Jerry Brotton --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From School Library Journal
Gr 10 Up-Naxos AudioBooks' top-drawer Classic Drama Series blissfully continues with this exquisite rendition of Othello starring Hugh Quarshie, Anton Lesser, Emma Fielding, and a full cast of professional English actors with extensive credits in the Royal National Theatre, BBC Radio Drama Company, and the Royal Shakespeare Company. Shakespeare's most domestic tragedy is an exceedingly complex journey through jealousy, self-doubt, inadequacies, and societal acceptance. Passed over for military promotion, Iago, perhaps Shakespeare's most nefarious character, manipulates Othello's downfall, culminating in the murder of his beloved wife, Desdemona, and Othello's subsequent suicide. Under David Timson's stewardship as director, the story is beautifully and simply told, embellished only with intermittent brassy flourishes of classical music and a dramatic echo effect and throbbing heart beat to underscore Othello's chaotic descent and rage. While the entire cast is excellent, the trio of Quarshie (Othello), Lesser (Iago), and Fielding (Desdemona) are outstanding. An outline of each individual cassette, complete synopsis, full notes regarding the text, and cast biographies are included in a compact 24-page supplemental booklet. For all collections.-Barry X. Miller, Austin Public Library, TX
Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.See all Product Description
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a city, as an existence unto itself. The city prospers it needs to be defended raise money and so on and so
fourth and functions almost like a country..here we have the moorish othello in to defend the nation, the city of Venice, and the ancient politics of Rome with its senate and republican system of government seems to have fascinated Shakespeare in a different way from his own nations history, and he often plays these stories, from a history drawn from his own sources, but its the characters he creats, the poems, the love, virtue, lust, fall from grace, debauchery and all this exists within a christian world. Some live to the heights of the ancient christian view, perfections or virtues and others live lives of privation, or deprivation..Othello is one of his best and among all the stress and strain of being a battlefield commander lies the heartache of his attempt to realize love and his thought hes been cuckolded. That is the drama..adultery not only as a fact, but more succinctly his love does not love him anymore in thought..her love is elsewhere..and DEsdemona is on eof his most beautifully realized creations and she comes off best radiant in her defense a s a christian woman of the middle ages slandered, and abused in aa cutthroat world. "let heaven and men and angels let them all.cry"(p 87)..at the break up of a loving relationship much more than any concern for marriage. The whole of creation mourns..as God's work being frustrated.Read more ›
That villain is Iago, a high-ranking soldier who has a grudge against the noble Moorish soldier Othello, who has just eloped with the beautiful Desdemona. Using a nobleman as his pawn, Iago first turns Desdemona's father against Othello, but the new soldier defends himself agains claims of witchcraft.
But Iago's true plan is far more devious, as he disgraces Othello's lieutenant Cassion and plants Desdemona's handkerchief in Cassio's room. Othello finds himself confronted by a chess game of lies, deceit and suspected infidelity, and his jealousy reaches a fever pitch that can only end in death.
Yeah, the real star of this play is undoubtedly Iago. This is the most repellent mixture of absolute malicious evil and crazy-smart intellect that anyone could write -- he is the person you love to hate, even as you admire how devilishly perfect he is at playing the chessmaster who whispers poison into your ear while playing your "friend." He doesn't quite think of EVERYTHING, but he comes close enough that you would NEVER want to deal with someone like this.
But this tragedy is also underscored by the depiction of Othello, a truly noble and loyal soldier who is turned into a deranged homicidal mess. It's somehow even more disturbing to see him deteriorate than it was to see Macbeth, because this guy was on top of the world in every way -- he was smart, eloquent, a brilliant soldier and a newlywed.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
I read this book while in school and now my kids are reading it. They will grow to appreciate Shakespeare.Published 8 months ago by Paul
The layout of the No Fear Shakespeare book makes it so very easy to read and a nice quality book for a low price . What's not to love !Published 13 months ago by Margaret Brittain