Presentation on theme: "OTHELLO YEAR 13 ENGLISH WITH MRS KELLY. The Play (some more general notes) Tragedy of a man who kills the person he loves The Moor: for dramatic impact."— Presentation transcript:
OTHELLO YEAR 13 ENGLISH WITH MRS KELLY
The Play (some more general notes) Tragedy of a man who kills the person he loves The Moor: for dramatic impact and to heighten/create drama had to have nobility and greatness This earned tragic sympathy from the audience Primarily achieved through the poetry of O Noble, exotic, royal, “valiant”, courageous The threat to Cyprus by the Turks gives dramatic tension in the plotline and shows O’s indispensible to the Venetian State Autobiography of O – travels history and partly by references throughout the play to past life incidents, been in camp since 7, death of brother, slavery, killing Turk in Aleppo Shakespeare convinces us that O always loves his bride
O commits murder then executes justice on himself when finding out D is innocent Iago is the villain who directs his hatred against O. Racial hatred, mad that Cassio was promoted over him, and a weak belief that O slept with his wife, fuels his villainy Roderigo is Iago’s fool. Iago promises him D. Once married had to infer that she would take a lover Cassio and Bianca: not quite a mercenary relationship. Does give the handkerchief to B which gives Iago a useful instrument for arousing O’s fury Iago easily brings down C by being able to incite C into drinking and then fighting. C poor head for drinking. Iago suggests to C that he should ask D to intercede for him C privy to O’s courtship of D D drops handkerchief and Emilia picks it up and gives it to Iago. D forgets about it (O’s first gift and used to be his mothers) until she is worried about O’s headache. Forgetfulness is a sign of love not carelessness. Emilia is deceived by her husband and turns against him when discovers the truth D an innocent murdered
O a hero degraded and destroyed by his subordinate Iago Honesty: It is essential thing that Iago appears honest right until he is unmasked It is ironic that D the most honest and open character should have these characteristics rejected by O in favour of Iago’s false cover of honesty Iago deceives O, D, C, Montano, Lodovico, Emilia, and even Roderigo who knows that Iago is dishonest Iago is the consummate villain entrapping a noble nature. Methods: intricate/clever. Purpose: dark. ABSOLUTE HYPOCRITE.
Language Activity Act III,iii, 92: "Chaos is come again" Act III,iii, 93–280: Iago preys upon Othello Catalogue the number of times Iago uses repetition, leading questions, hesitation, intimation, and rhetorical appeals to unsettle Othello's mind in III,iii, For each device, students should note the effect it is having on Othello's state of mind. Note Iago's introduction of the words "jealousy," "cuckold" and "monster" into his rhetoric. How do these words affect a man such as Othello?
OTHELLO’S CHANGING LANGUAGE The language of Othello is of great beauty and at the same time contributes significantly to the structure of the play and the development of the plot and characters. Imagery is perhaps the most important language feature of the play. In the early acts of the play, O’s imagery reflects his noble, frank and open character. He refers to the natural forces of storms, seas and winds; of celestial bodies “you chaste stars” and of heaven and the unexplained. When meeting D in Cyprus O speaks of tempests and “hills of seas Olympus-high” II,i,185. Such images arise naturally from his emotions and his rich imagination. O’s language at the beginning of the play shows his noble, heroic and calm nature., such as in I,ii “Keep up your bright swords for the dew will rust them”. He has such confidence and skill in his speech that he can claim that he is “rude” in his speech knowing that no-one will possibly believe him. However Iago in contrast is more calculating and rational. He uses fewer images because of this and often his images seem forced and artificial. When he does use images they reflect his cold and hate filled nature. Images of lower order animals, such as in “old black ram”, which he describes O as to Brabantio in I, and devilish and lustful images are what he uses to express himself.
The changes from poetry (blank verse) to prose is also another important structural device to emphasise character differences and developments. The prose is dominated by Iago who in turn causes others, particularly O and R to speak in prose. Compare O’s speech in I,i “keep up your bright swords” where O shows clarity of thought to his fragmented language and repetition when his coherence and clarity have deteriorated badly as Iago’s poison takes effect. Throughout Act III,iii, O speaks in short, clipped exclamations and half- sentences such as “Ha”, “O Misery” and “Dost thou say so?”. Also notable repetition as in “Not a jot, not a jot”, “O,monstrous,monstrous”, “O, blood, blood, blood” and “Damn her, lewd minx! O, damn her, damn her!”. Such moments, when O shifts from his typical seemingly effortless verse to near inarticulateness, demonstrate the extent to which O’s passion has broken down his self-control. In act III,iii, he is still mostly speaking in coherent sentences or phrases; but this is no longer the case in Act IV,i. This scene begins with Iago saying “will you think so?” and O can only echo “think so Iago?”. Iago then introduces the word “lie” into the conversation, which sends O into a frenzy as he attempts to sort out the semantic differences between
C “lying on” (lying about) D and “lying with” (have sex with D) IV,i, The various words and images Iago has planted in O’s mind over the course of the play are transformed into sporadic eruptions out of O’s mouth: “lie with her? Swounds, that’s fulsome! Handkerchief, confessions, handkerchief” IV,i, These eruptions culminate in the nonsense of “Pish! Noses, ears and lips!” IV,i,40. Ultimately, O’s inability to articulate seems to overcome his physically, as he collapses “in a trance”.
At the end is there some reminder of O’s former status and power? YES! Because for the last 3 acts we see him as undignified, uncontrolled and even mad we need this reminder for him to be a tragic hero. In the final act after he has killed D and realised the truth, O regains some of his old character and returns to poetry. The speech V, ii,i “It is the cause, it is the cause, my soul....” is a good example of his return to clear thought and his old ‘noble’ imagery. “Speak as one that loved not too wisely, but too well...like the base Indian, threw a pearl away...” IV,ii,
The final Act! Act V, ii,300: "Demand me nothing; what you know, you know" Act V, ii, 337–338: "When you shall these unlucky deeds relate,/ Speak of me as I am" (V, ii,) Act V,ii, 296–301 and 334–352 Re-read the passages cited above. Why does Iago choose silence in lines 296–301? Does Othello's final speech redeem him? Examine the speech for the metaphors and images he uses. To what extent has Othello become a tragic hero?
At the end of the play Iago discovers that even his verbal sparring cannot save him, he resorts to silence:"Demand me nothing. What you know, you know. From this time forth I never will speak word" (V, 2, 302–303). Ironically, it is his refusal to speak that inevitably enmeshes him in his own web of deceit; it is his silence that elicits O's tragic recognition of his crime and of what he has become. Indeed, in terms of eloquence, O-not Iago—has the final word. O does not blame the devil or I, he blames himself. He has ignobly destroyed a priceless “pearl” and therefore gives himself the death penalty.
Character Activity One way in which Shakespeare develops characters is through their speech—not only what they say, but how they say it. Look at forms of dramatic speech (i.e.: dialogue, monologue, soliloquy) and discuss the differing purposes and functions of each. Look at the construction and content of several individual speeches in Othello. Understand how what is said and how it is said develops character. For example, Othello’s final speech is an important index of his character. It is an address to the political leaders who commissioned him, rather than a diatribe against Iago—a public speech, rather than an anguished private monologue. It tells us about who he was and who he has become through his unchecked passion. It reveals what he feels in the aftermath of slaying Desdemona. Iago’s speeches, on the other hand, are most often in the form of soliloquys; he talks to himself about his plans and his evaluation of the other characters. This tendency to talk to himself may be an indication of both his madness and his malevolence.
Read this example to the students: I have rubbed this young quat (Roderigo) almost to the sense, And he grows angry. Now whether he kill Cassio, Or Cassio him, or each do kill the other, Every way makes my gain. Live Roderigo, He calls me to a restitution large Of gold and jewels that I bobbed from him As gifts to Desdemona. It must not be. If Cassio do remain, He hath a daily beauty in his life That makes me ugly; and besides, the Moor May unfold me to him; there I stand in much peril. No he must die. But so, I hear him coming. (V, i, 11-21)
Desdemona, on the other hand, is only heard talking naturally with other people. Yet, she too is developed through both the content and form of her speech. For example, Desdemona’s conversations with Emilia, particularly at the end of the play (IV, iii,60), reveal aspects of her character as well as Emilia’s character. Have students look at these and discuss what they reveal about each of the characters.
Once students are aware of how speech reveals character, divide the class into small groups. Have each group draw the name of one of the major characters and an act number. From this act the group should select one speech and discuss what its content and form reveals about the character. Then the group should dramatically read or recite the speech to the class and discuss with the class how the character is developed through the speech.
Character Questions 1.Discuss how the character of Othello develops. What is he like at the beginning of the play? The end? 2.To what extent can Iago be said to be an evil character, embodying evil for evil’s sake? 3.Does Othello deserve our sympathy? 4.Compare and contrast Desdemona and Emilia. 5.Why is Othello so taken in by Iago? 6.What is Roderigo’s motivation and role in the play? 7.Why was Othello so jealous? Explain his motivation for killing Desdemona. You must use quotation and scene numbers for evidence!
Structure Questions Describe the development of Othello’s jealousy as it relates to the structure of the play. What are the links and turning points in the play giving it unity? What is the relationship between conflict and structure in the play? What is the relationship between the outer and inner world in the play. When is the outside world important? When is it not? You must use quotation and scene numbers for evidence!
Meaning Questions What is the basic meaning of Othello? To what extent is jealousy the central theme of the play? What connections are made between jealousy and reasoning? Why? How and why is the theme of deception used in the play? Explain ‘honour’ and ‘reputation’ as they are used in the play (check the speeches where these are discussed). How far does Othello fulfil the requirements of the tragic hero? You must use quotation and scene numbers for evidence!
Style Questions Does Shakespeare concentrate too much on jealousy rather than on other themes? Explain the basic imagery of magic and witchcraft as it is used in the play. Discuss other patterns of imagery in Othello that reveal characterisation, social setting, theme etc. How is dramatic irony used in the play? To what extent does the language of the play drive it? How important is what the characters say and how they say it? You must use quotation and scene numbers for evidence!
How will you be tested on your knowledge of Othello (or the novel) for Achievement Standard 3.1? You will be answering an essay question in your external exam for 4 credits. AchievementAchievement with MeritAchievement with Excellence Respond critically to specified aspects of studied written text(s), with supporting evidence, means clearly developing the focus and scope of an argument when discussing specified aspects of the text(s), then integrating a range of relevant points supported by accurate and relevant evidence. The response should be communicated clearly and coherently, in a structured written answer that follows the conventions of an essay format. Respond critically and convincingly to specified aspect(s) of studied written text(s), with supporting evidence includes making discerning, informed critical responses to specified aspects supported by accurate and relevant evidence. Respond critically and perceptively to specified aspect(s) of studied written text(s), with supporting evidence includes making sophisticated and insightful or original critical responses to specified aspects, integrated with accurate and relevant evidence. It may include explaining how significant aspects of the text(s) communicate ideas about contexts, such as human experience, society and the wider world.
Vocab Respond critically involves developing the focus and scope of an argument when discussing specified aspect(s) of the text(s), and integrating a range of relevant points. The argument is communicated clearly and coherently, in a structured written answer that follows the conventions of an essay format. Respond critically and convincingly involves making a discerning and informed argument relating to the specified aspect(s) of the text(s). Respond critically and perceptively involves making a sophisticated and insightful and/or original argument relating to the specified aspect(s) of the text(s).
Specified aspect(s) of written text(s) are selected from: – purposes and audiences – ideas (eg character, theme, setting) – language features (eg figurative language, syntax, style, symbolism, diction, vocabulary, sound devices) – structures (eg narrative sequence, beginnings and endings). Supported by evidence refers to the use of specific and relevant details to support an argument. This may include examples, quotations, and/or references to the studied text(s) and/or other sources.
Put Simply….. Your essay should be AT LEAST 500 words long. Your essay should include: an introduction key points related to the question, supported by examples and quotations a conclusion that focuses on the main idea.
Writing at Level 8 of the curriculum you should be able to demonstrate: Why authors use different techniques to develop aspects such as character, themes, and setting Why different people understand and interpret different texts in different ways Why the audience of the text is being positioned (encouraged to adopt a particular point of view) Why the author created the text and identifying the means by which texts are created Why and how a text relates to other texts and contexts (for example, historical, cultural, social, political) The wider significance of the text for the student and for society
Types of questions you will be asked QUESTIONS (Choose ONE) “Major characters can find themselves in collision with forces beyond their control, and in many cases their responses to the collision can be described as morally questionable.” To what extent do you agree with this statement? Respond to this question with close reference to one or more text(s) you have studied. “Forget the big players in the world; it is the people in the margins of our society whose stories are most compelling.” To what extent do you agree with this statement? Respond to this question with close reference to one or more text(s) you have studied. “The setting that is most accessible and relevant to the reader is the one that is grounded in realism.” To what extent do you agree with this statement? Respond to this question with close reference to one or more text(s) you have studied. “While the conclusion of a text is important, what really matters is the foundation of a good opening.” To what extent do you agree with this statement? Respond to this question with close reference to one or more text(s) you have studied.
“The use of symbolism can transform the most straightforward theme.” To what extent do you agree with this statement? Respond to this question with close reference to one or more text(s) you have studied. “A successful text will be one in which the reader is asked to be more than a spectator, in fact they are encouraged to be involved.” To what extent do you agree with this statement? Respond to this question with close reference to one or more text(s) you have studied. “In order to be informative, the shape and / or style of a text must always be straightforward.” To what extent do you agree with this statement? to this question with close reference to one or more text(s) you have studied. “An exceptional text will be one that handles facts and opinion with care.” To what extent do you agree with this statement? Respond to this question with close reference to one or more text(s) you have studied.
Planning tips… Answering a question The Question - Choose a question that suits your text and targets what you have studied. Questions are more specific than last year so choose carefully. If you start planning and realise that the question is not working for your text, change questions. Underline keywords in the essay question – these words will keep you on track and point to the sections of your study notes you need to use in your answer. Think of other words that mean the same so you have a group of useful words to use in your answer. Use these words over and over in your essay. Use the wording of your question - in your introduction and conclusion. Use the key words and synonyms throughout your answer. Stay conceptually focused on what your question is asking throughout your answer. Don’t just put things in because you know them. Remember that all questions are theme questions - If you are writing about character it is primarily to show how they develop the themes. You can interweave different sorts of evidence, but direct all your evidence towards answering the particular slant of your question. Thesis Statement - Try to form an argument around the quotation or statement so you focus on the question.
Planning your answer PLAN your answer briefly - This will focus your answer. You should know your entire argument before you begin writing. Your answer is not a surprise twist for the end of your essay; it should be in the introduction. Plans should be either in bullet point or mind map form - After you have brainstormed what you want to include go through and number points so that you have a clear structure. Your plan could include brief references to quotations to remind yourself where to use them.
Outline of an essay plan Begin with a quotation, question, thesis statement, or opinion to sum up the question. Focus on a 4–5 key points. Develop a logical argument or explanation for each point. Conclude by reinforcing a main idea from your thesis statement.
Paragraphs A standard paragraph will organise your thoughts and have these things: Statement or topic sentence – stating the main idea to be developed within the paragraph – use keywords from the question Explain – expanding the idea through discussion of evidence and detail. Quotations examples, and details to illustrate the idea should be woven into your sentence. Explain - the effect of any techniques used and acknowledge the author’s intention. Develop - your paragraph idea with another statement that attacks the essay question. Explain – expanding the idea through discussion of evidence and detail. Quotations examples, and details to illustrate the idea should be woven into your sentence. Explain - the effect of any techniques used and acknowledge the author’s intention. Link - back to the question by using keywords to answer the question and draw conclusions that go beyond the text (theme can be great here).
Analyse Iago’s motivations in Othello. Shakespeare’s Othello hinges on the motivation behind the manipulation and the destruction of it’s tragic hero Othello. Samuel Taylor Coleridge and many other critics have argued that Iago the man who brings down Othello has a “motiveless malignancy”; however closer examination of the play and in particular, Iago’s soliloquys, reveals that Iago is motivated by something more than the mere desire to do harm. In fact he spends a considerable amount of time attempting to justify his actions to himself. For example, when Iago says at the beginning of the play “I know my price I am worth no less a place” we see how he is motivated by a sense of injustice, in that he believes that he not Cassio should have been made lieutenant, and in fact he is better qualified. Iago is also motivated by a need to show his superiority over someone who is held in higher rank and esteem than he is when he believes that he in fact is superior. This can be seen when he says “I follow him to serve my turn upon him”. Disturbingly, Iago goes on to reveal that “Pleasure and sport make the hours seem short”, showing how he actually enjoys using his skills to manipulate others and this enjoyment is what propels him along. It would be diminishing Shakespeare’s great skill of understanding human nature to make Iago pure evil, when he could create a very psychologically complex character. Jealousy also motivates Iago to ruin Othello and Cassio. In Act 2, Scene 1, Iago talks of an unfounded rumour that there was once a sexual encounter between Othello and Emilia, “for that I do suspect the lusty Moor Hath leaped into my seat. The thought whereof doth like a poisonous mineral gnaw my inwards”. Léone Teyssandier a modern critic supports my opinion that a possible motive for Iago's actions towards Cassio, Desdemona and Othello is envy. She claims that Iago sees them as more noble, generous and, in the case of Cassio, more handsome than he is. In particular, he sees the death of Cassio as a necessity, saying of him that "He hath a daily beauty in his life that makes me ugly". In the end, none of these motivations seem to be the primary motivation and none of them stand alone. Perhaps, they are not “real” motivations, but Shakespeare has cleverly used them as justifications for Iago’s desire to be in charge of the lives of others and the thrill he receives from such power. This is mirrored in real life by many corrupt third world political leaders.
Thesis Statements Thesis statement Establishing a thesis statement in your introduction is an easy way to ensure your essay is attacking the question. Include key words from the question in your thesis statement and use it to drive your essay. Your 4 or 5 body paragraphs should all relate back to your thesis statement.
To what extent is the concept of reputation central to Othello as a whole? An untrained, anxious and naïve, student would simply write an essay describing how all the characters care about their reputations. A likely essay plan for this student would look like the following:
To what extent is the concept of reputation central to Othello as a whole? The student has identified and described how reputation appears in the play. However, that is not what the question is asking. This student has failed to explain why they believe reputation is central to the play. Why would the concept of reputation be central to the play? It develops the main themes of appearance vs. reality and human frailty It drives the plot It develops the audience’s understanding of the characters It is what influences and ultimately controls the actions of the characters.
To what extent is the concept of reputation central to Othello as a whole? Include key words from the question to create a thesis statement that will drive your essay. If you believe reputation is central to the play, your thesis statement may be similar to this: Reputation is the central concept in Othello. It drives the characters and plot, and ultimately reveals the tragedy’s major theme of human frailty. Alternatively, if you believe reputation is not the central concept in the play your thesis statement may be similar to this: Although reputation is significant in the play, hubris ( extreme pride or arrogance) is the central concept.
To what extent is deciept central to Othello as a whole? Look at how Sam Vincent in his Excellent essay cleverly answers this question.
Magic Sentences to encourage a critical response The reader/writer is being positioned to feel/think/sympathise with…through… Because the text is set in… The author/director/playwright has created the character of …to… The text’s time setting has a major influence on… The use of the third person narrator in this text… The use of …in this text effectively allows us to understand the significance of… The author/director/playwright has been successful in…because… The use of…is vital to our understanding of the key ideas in the text because… The way the text deals with the issue of…means that the reader/viewer… The text conveys the idea of…convincingly because… The author/director/playwright has deliberately used….to…. The technique of …is ideally suited to … …is also effective in the ability to show… The use of …is well suited to…
Using Criticism in your essays
Magic Sentences for using critic’s views The critic…believes that… ….’s theory about this is that… According to… …’s view on this is quite different. He says that… I believe that this argument is not valid because… …suggests that… On the other hand…believes that… This idea is supported by…when she says… In my view, however,…. This idea supports my opinion… This idea contradicts my opinion…
Use magic sentences to respond to these critic’s views Use the worksheet to do this