Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Othello as a Tragic Hero Essay

One of the most obvious focal point of disagreement deed of conveyanceive Othello is whether Othello was a tragical adept or non according to the incorrupt conception of a tragic hero whether his characterization, personal attri moreoveres make him pargonntage into the dobriny of Aristotelian concept of tragic hero Whether or non he possessed a tragic flaw. To Swinburne, Othello was the terriblest man of mans making. (Swinburne) nevertheless T. S. Eliot, on the other hand spoke unfavorably of his happy himself up, (153) and came out with a celebrated critical term Bovarysme.Robert H.Heilman (1956) comes very(prenominal) close to restating the Eliot position when he says Othello is the least heroic of Shakespe ars tragic heroes. (p. 166) The identification of Othellos hamartia differs from reader to reader and from critic to critic. almost critics are of the view that excessive Egotism and self-confidence of Othello remain the main cause of his tragedy. He harbors unjusti fied suspicions against Desdemona. He had a trustful personality and he is thorough in his trust of Iago. (Bradley, 1965. p. 213. Jealousy overpowers him and he lacks self-control.It is scantily likely that even a combination of alone these would be tally to what Aristotle considered to be a serious hamartia, and he exhibited any of the failing mentioned above. It would only be logical to say that the Othello was punished for crime in the yes of the divine. other view is that the present failings of Othello may be taken to subject matter that he was he was always like that, and his tragedy comes overdue many organic or innate unsoundness in his character. However we get no indication of this in the play.The conception of the tragic hero that we gather from Aristotles Poetics is that he is a highly esteemed and prosperous man who falls into misfortune because of some serious hamartia i. e. tragic flaw. Aristotle gives the example of Oedipus and Thyestes, which means that a ccording to him, it was Oedipus hamartia that was directly responsible for his fall. Although the meaning of hamartia is farthermost from certain, its most frequent applications is in the sense of false incorrupt judgment, or even purely intellectual errors. Among Greeks no sharp distinction amidst the two existed.It is generally believed that according to Aristotle the hamartia off Oedipus consists in some moral blots and it has been tried to identify various moral faults in Oedipus. Othello likewise possessed these moral flaw and his tragedy only comes due to these moral flaws, So according to Aristotelian conception, Othello is a tragic hero as he is a larger than deportment character and has tragic flaws that learn his destruction. Distinguished Professor Butcher has identified four possible aim of meaning of Aristotles Hamartia i. . tragic flaw.The foremost of these connotations is an error due to unavoidable ignorance of circumstances whereas an error caused by unaware ness of conditions that might suck been identified and for that reason to some extent morally blameworthy is another(prenominal) ostensibleation of the sense in which the term hamartia was used by Aristotle. The third sense is A fault or error where the act is conscious and intentional, but not deliberate. Such acts are committed in anger or mania.Where as fourth one is A fault of character distinct, on the one hand, from an isolated error, and, on the other, from the vice which has its potty in the depraved willa flaw of character that is not tainted with a vicious purpose. This essay will try to dismember all these manifestation of tragic flaws present in the character of Othello to manifest that he was a tragic hero. The character of Othello possesses an aura of personality that makes him marvellous as well naive and unrefined as compared with other characters in the play and other Shakespearean protagonists.That is the sole reason that why he fell a prey to Iagos plot. Ia go told Roderigo, O, sir, content you. I come out him Othello to serve my turn upon him (I, i lines 38-9). Iago explains that only follow Othello to certain extent. A rudimentary supposition is that as the murder of Othellos wife Desdemona is the resultant role of deceitfulness of Iago, so himself remained a victim to the evil genius of Iago. Othellos wrath was a product of his impulsiveness, the inherent flaw in his character, but that was utilized and triggered by the machination of Iago.The offense of Iago to conspire the demise of the moorland is worse since it is embedded in a shrewd mind with unionised attempt whereas the harmdoing of Othello was the result of his naivete. He was blindfolded by a thorn in the heart and mind. But his sin can not be justified only on this ground as in that respect were various methods to check the blameworthiness. However, it can be illustrated that Othello permitted himself to be influenced by Iagos proposition of the unfaithfulness of D esdemona. Iago only provides a justification that was needed by Othello.Some critics are of the view that Desdemonas murder is an outcome of Othellos excessive arrogance and his impulsiveness to decision-making. A. C. Bradley ponders over the dispositions and nature of Othello and says in this regard The sources of riskiness in this character are revealed but too clearly by the story. In the first place, Othellos mind, for all its poetry, is very simple. He is not observant. His nature tends outward. He is quite free from introspection, and is not given to reflection. sense excites his imagination, but it confuses and dulls his intellect. On this side he is the very opposite of Hamlet, with whom, however, he shares a great openness and trustfulness of nature. In addition, he has lilli throw awayian experience of the corrupt products of civilised life, and is ignorant of European women. (p. 217) Despite this study flaw, he possessed some distinct personality traits. His has the c apacity to pass water positive and reciprocal relationships and to take a number of steps to persuade.He possesses the capability to tailor an approach to appeal to the needs of a exceptional audience and an example of this relationship building is his genuine companionship with Iago. But again this trait of Othello is used against him as Iago takes advantage of his trust and visualise more evil plots against him. Although Othello possesses some evil propensities but he is undefended of preventing these base and evil instincts to dominate him. In order to locate the score and gravity of his sins, his motives fro his evil actions must be taken into musing.It can be argued that his sins are product of weak mental faculties and some inherent flaws in his character. It was further enhanced by the manipulation of Iago instead of his pride. His action of murdering Desdemona was also not due to deficiency of confidence as he was a strong leader as manifested by his ability to comman d armed services and various other states affairs. But his leadership does not mean that he was forfeited against personal fantasies and whims of imagination. Othellos basic dilemma was that he was in a totally unexampled socio-cultural milieu.He was in a new city with a new bride who was graceful and young. Furthermore, Othello was in deep fuck with her does not know her well. He was uncertain about Desdemona decision to direct him as her husband, and can only comprehend one clarification, She lovd me for the dangers I had passd. (I,iii,167) He is aware of the prevailing environment of prejudice and bow in Venice and without doubt must inquire why Desdemona would against her own norms and value and associate white Venetians by marrying an outsider. All these added suspicion in his minds originally Iago begins his conniving plot.Although Desdemona was an epitome of warmth and care for her, but his preconceived notions cannot enable him to believe in her love unreservedly. His response to his skeptic mind is to put Desdemona on a pedestal, making her an emblem of purity and trustworthiness Tis not to make me jealous/ To say my wife Is fair, feeds well, loves company, Is free of speech, sings, plays, and dances well. / Where virtue Is, these are more virtuous. Nor from mine own weak merits will I cajole/ The smallest fear or doubt of her revolt, For she had eyes, and chose me. (3. 3. 180)Othello arrived at the conclusion that Desdemonas consideration and virtue only capacitated her to feel promption for the unlovable an unstable closure originating from his low self-worth. When Iago cast away this fictitious idealism with his evil designs, he is merely strengthening what Othello considers profoundly to be thoroughly possible i. e. that Desdemona could love another man. Iago is on hand to verify Othellos primary doubts Ay, in that respects the point as (to be bold with you)/ Not to affect many proposed matches/ Of her own clime, complexion, and degree , / Whereto we see in all things nature tends Her will, recoiling to her amend judgement,/ May fall to match you with her country forms, / And happily repent. (3. 3. 228) So all these facts, arguments and supported evidence clearly manifest that Othello was a lager than life character and his tragic flaw contributes toward his tragedy. It is both an amalgam of self-infliction and circumstances beyond his control. He is a noble character but when things go wrong and pressures builds up, Othellos inadequacies are revealed like the cracks in the dam.This makes him a tragic hero according to very conception of Aristotle. A. C. Bradley refutes the point of view that Othello was not noble and has no characteristics of a tragic hero. He is of the view This character is so noble, Othellos feelings and actions follow so inevitably from it and from the forces brought to bear on it, and his sufferings are so heart-rending, that he stirs, I believe, in most readers a passion of mingled love an d pity which they feel for no other hero in Shakespeare, and to which not even Mr Swinburne can do more than justice.Yet there are some critics and not a few readers who cherish a grudge against him. They do not merely think that in the later(prenominal) stages of his temptation he showed a certain obtuseness, and that, to speak pedantically, he acted with unjustifiable precipitance and violence no one, I suppose, denies that. (p. 221)

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