” The green-eyed monster”

The theme of jealous is, to me, arguably the main theme in Othello. If it wasn’t for jealousy, even petty or made up jealous, the story would not have progressed in the grotesque display that we know as the tragedy of Othello.  Iago’s deceit is the cause of Othello’s jealousy and what leads to poor Desdemona’s death. And It’s Iago’s jealousy of Cassio and Othello (if he really did sleep with Emilia) that leads him down this crazy road of creating a love triangle and causing Othello to go a little crazy.  He calls jealousy a green-eyed monster, which of course he hope consumes Othello so that he will kill his wife and ruin his life. “O, beware, my lord, of jealousy; It is the green-eyed monster which doth mock
The meat it feeds on; that cuckold lives in bliss” (3.3 190-191) No one suspects Iago’s plan they all call him honest when he is just lying to make everyone be consumed by the green-eyed monster! Ah, Irony.

The green-eyed monster, being green with envy, or however we use a colloquialism these days, consumes men and women with passion that sometimes leads to heinous crimes. I cannot speak for everyone, but I have turned (figuratively) green with envy when I saw my now husband at high school Prom with someone else, or if I ever felt that he chose a girl over me (even if he didn’t maybe someone like Iago just twisted me all up). It is an all too familiar feeling for me, so I can sympathize with Othello because he was honestly duped by the villian! I would say that even though Iago was caught he still won, Othello and Desdemona are dead. I mean Cassio survived and foiled his plans, but hey Cassio was just a pawn anyway. “I have rubb’d this young quat 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” (5.1 11-14) It was Othello that became the monster, a murderous manipulated jealous monster.

Poor green-eyed Othello.

~Alexandra Watkins


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