How Iago Convinces Othello that Desdemona and Cassio Must Die

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How Iago Convinces Othello that Desdemona and Cassio Must Die

In Act Three, Scene Three of ‘Othello’, by William Shakespeare, the main theme is Iago’s plan to convince Othello of Desdemona’s infidelity with Cassio; and ultimately get them punished. By the end of the scene, Iago has succeeded in his malicious plan and Othello is sure that Cassio and Desdemona must be killed. Iago manages to do this through skilfully using his ability to manipulate and entrap Othello into having total faith in his words.

In the beginning of the scene, Iago plays on Othello’s already slightly suspicious mind (due to previously telling him that he suspects Desdemona is sleeping with Cassio) by muttering: “Ha! I Like
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Iago constantly plays the innocent in this scene, making it look as if he is just being a loyal friend to Othello. He regularly states that he thinks Cassio is honest, but then in lines 128-129 he twists this around by saying: “Men should be what they seem; or those that be not, would they might seem none!” Here Iago is implying that Cassio acts like an honest man but in fact he is deceiving Othello and is not really what he seems. Iago’s behavior makes Othello more and more curious and he asks Iago to tell him his thoughts. Iago seems reluctant to reveal what he claims to know about Cassio and Desdemona, again making himself look like the innocent and loyal one.

Through Iago playing the innocent, Othello is given a false sense of security and trusts Iago, thus making him start to believe what Iago is saying could be true. However, Othello tells Iago he is confident of his wife’s virtue and that if he is to believe Iago he needs proof that what he is saying is true. Iago uses this to his advantage and, again seeming as though he is being a loyal friend, says: “I am glad of this, for now I shall have reason to show the love and duty that I bear you with franker spirit.” Iago uses Othello’s doubtfulness as an

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