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Introduction - Edited by Ryan Chiu What could possibly bring one of the most powerful successful men down on his knees Jealousy Mistrust Deceit William Shakespeares Othello tells a tragic story of how jealousy and mistrust can rob a powerful man of his power Due to the ever changing context of society throughout history many more critical interpretations of the play Othello have been formed since the Elizabethan times Throughout this book you will find many differing interpretations of Othello Two interesting interpretations to compare include the ancient Aristotelian interpretation and the fairly recent feminist interpretation The Aristotelian interpretation of the play is concerned with whether or not the play is labelled a true tragedy Three factors which determine whether or not Othello fits under the criteria for a true Aristotelian tragedy include the plot main characters and the cause of the tragic ending On the other hand the more recent feminist view of Othello is concerned with the social status of women at the time and the way in which women are portrayed in Othello Aristotle a Greek philosopher defined tragedy as the imitation in dramatic form of an action that is serious and complete with incidents arousing pity and fear wherewith it effects a catharsis of such emotions Poetics 14 Shakespeares Othello is indeed a story of tragedy Iagos evil schemes throughout the play cause much grief and pity on the side of Othello Iago manipulates Othellos innocence naivety and trust to cause Othello to become jealous over the thought of his newly wedded wife cheating on him Othellos fall from grace leads him to eventually murder his own wife and once Iagos plan has been exposed by Emilia Iago murders his own wife and Othello commits suicide It is the deaths of the innocent bold daring women - Emilia and Desdemona along with our beloved tragic hero Othello which causes a catharsis of emotions because
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