Theme Of Obsession In Othello

The true nature of obsession manipulates a person’s character, forcing them to act in unusual ways, as if possessed by an involuntary need. An obsessed mind becomes intensely absorbed in the subject of the obsession to an extent that drives away the truth and realism in their values, morals and perceptions. William Shakespeare manifests this idea of an involuntary change in the play “Othello”. With similar views, this idea is identified by Baz Lurnham, Romeo & Juliet (1996). The exploration of the texts, discusses the obsessive nature of love and the inability to conform to society, and obsession can lead to tragedy and downfall. Throughout each of these pieces, the composers’ use of characterization depicts the true nature of obsession with …show more content…
Othello’s tragic flaw of trust, closely links to his neurotic nature which began as love for Desdemona and in the end hatred. In context, such exaggerated drama within relationships were not unheard of. Othello’s obsession with Desdemona results in an eruption of jealousy. The manipulation used by Iago leads Othello to question Desdemona’s infidelity. “Jealousy, is the green eyed monster which doth mock the meat it feeds on”. Here we see Iago manipulate Othello into thinking he is a friend, warning him to remain sane. Though, he knows the transformation in character soon to erupt within Othello. The destruction to come is foreshadowed with the use of a metaphor suggesting that obsession ferments its victim. The ability to trust so easily will result in such jealousy, along with it comes madness. The question posed in relation to Desdemona’s loyalty, brings with it a shift in character for Othello. The handkerchief remains a key symbol that brings about the downfall of Othello. In the final scene we see him proclaim “O Fool, O fool, O fool!” as he is told of Desdemona’s purity and loyalty, not unfaithfulness. Othello’s obsessive character ultimately brought about his corruption. Moreover, Romeo and Juliet reconnoiters the downfall through obsession. They were young, in love and infatuated. The themes of obsessive love, sex, and death become inextricably intertwined, ensnaring the characters in an intricate web. Reunion in the final scene is not only spiritual, but also sexual. This sexual reference explores the maturity developed in both individuals as they are so unable able to live without the other, they take their own life in grief of the other. Lurnham draws on the Elizabethan meaning of death as sexual climax. Romeo drinks poison from the round vial — an allusion to female sexuality, after he is convinced of her death, so told by the Friar (though she is not dead). Juliet awakes from the sleep potion and

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