This paper follows the critical lines of feminism and psychoanalysis to argue that Othello is a conflict between female characters' moral voices and male figures' treacherous voices. Othello simply cannot continue in thinking that his wife has been unfaithful to him. He soon sinks back into despair. Beneath the veneer or Othello’s confident manhood is insecurity. Barbanzio asserts that Othello is so unloveable that it would take black magic for his daughter to fall in love with him. The disapproval from society is evident through Othello’s low self-esteem and Iago’s manipulation. 2014. However, despite displaying clear terms on our sites, sometimes users scan work that is not their own and this can result in content being uploaded that should not have been. The independence of women as presented contradicts the values of masculinity of dominance. Even Iago’s diabolically convincing words could not have replaced Othello’s loyalty and faith in his beloved Desdemona. Besides what he speaks of it in act one and in connection to the handkerchief. Racial slurs do not disturb his strength. According to Elizabethan or Shakespeare's society built upon … The interpretation of Desdemona is a woman who seems willing to assert her self. This is significant in highlighting the consequences of self-condemnation and inferiority flowing from treating one gender badly solely on the basis that one is a woman. The consequences flowing from speaking the truth for Emilia are dire, and no one comes to her rescue as she is struck to death by Iago, while revealing the truth about him, testifying thus in need of protection, no man comes to her rescue (VANITA). He too is infected with the age’s xenophobia and racism for he cannot make sense of his daughters decision to marry Othello except if there was dark magic involved. Despite the intensely patriarchal nature of the society Shakespeare grew up in, for the majority of his life a woman occupied the throne—and an unmarried woman at that. Correll, Barbara. However, it is argued that silence is justified as a basis of self-preservation. JSTOR . For as much as Othello despairs in Desdemona’s unfaithfulness, he is more injured by its offense to his masculinity. Learn vocabulary, terms, and more with flashcards, games, and other study tools. Regardless these words do not break his confidence nor lead to his ruin. Emilia is of the view that a wife is justified to use the weapon of “internal” revenge of infidelity to get back to the husband. . He shared tales of ‘Of being taken by the insolent foe/ And sold to slavery, of my redemption thence’ (I.3.137’138). Yet Othello is not the only one suffering from anxious masculinity brought on by the male principal. Drawing on the concepts of Jungian and Freudian psychoanalysis, I argue that the association of female speech and silence with sexuality is a projection of misogynist and racist discourses. Othello confesses to Desdemona that even if she swore she was innocent of each accusation, she would not change his mind again verifying that because Iago is a male, his perspective is much more trustworthy than Desdemona’s own testimony (V.ii.62). “Feminist Thematics and Shakespearean Tragedy.” Modern Language Association 103 .2 Mar. Gender is understood as not only referring to either male or female but also as a social construct. Michael Cassio, Othello’s lieutenant, notes that Othello is not easily troubled’ he is a man of power and fortitude. Breitenberg, Mark. 3111). In essence, Shakespeare was stressing the importance of human intervention to save a woman from an abusive husband out to harm her. Murphy, Jeffrie G. “Jealousy, Shame, and the Rival: Philosophical Studies: An International Journal for Philosophy in the Analytic Tradition.” Selected Papers Presented in 2001 at the 75th Annual Meeting of the Pacific Division of the American Philosophical Association 108 .1/2 Mar. As the masculine principle is suspicious of women, Othello trusts Iago despite the testimony of two witnesses. Desdemona responds ‘I myself’ (V.ii.113). While she is initially conflicted between the beliefs of her society and her own convictions, by choosing to follow her own moral ideals she reveals her strong, independent persona. She is psychologically free from the constraints of patriarchy imposed on her by society and self-restraints flowing from the socialization of a woman in Venice. To Iago, receiving promotion to lieutenant would display his masculinity for he would receive Othello’s affirmation. For despite the fact that Othello claims to be madly in love with his wife, and trust in her even to the point of his own demise, he has forgone this with trust in Iago who is more trustworthy because he is male. Web. “The Romance of Patriarchy: Ideology, Subjectivity, and Postmodern Feminist Cultural Theory.” Popular Narrative, Popular Images: Critical Critique 10 . For when women step outside of their patriarchal roles, as defined by men, it shakes males from their patriarchal security and causes an imbalance in the system. Othello, the noble Moore of Venice is a man of conquest and adventure ‘of hair-breadth scapes i’th’ imminent deadly breach, of being taken by the insolent foe.’ (I.iii.135’6). However, in Shakespeare’s Othello, armed men are depicted as the primary benefactors of the patriarchal order through their remarks and attitudes towards women, which reaches at its peak through the acts of violence and murder of the two women who defy the patriarchal order. Iago then mentions to Cassio that Othello has married. If he does seek the love of another woman, it is her fault for loosing the handkerchief. Emilia argues that women are not to be blamed for their husbands infidelity, appearing as the strongest female role in Othello. To you I am bound for life and education; My life and education both do learn me How to respect you. Claiming that the prejudice and racist tension proved to much for Othello. More simply, patriarchy is men defining women as other; seeing maleness as superior over the feminine. From this we can conclude that Othello has at one time been enslaved by foes and sold into service. However, in the end, Desdemona lets go of her hold onto chastity, which cannot save her and wishes for “beggarly divorcement” than death. Now that Desdemona has deviated from her prescribed role, Othello feels truly threatened. At first, Othello speaks with great trust in his wife, refuting Iago’s cunning in declaring that he will not have’the smallest fear or doubt of her revolt,/ for she had eyes and chose me. Because those bound to the masculine principal believe that women are unable to truly be subjugated, there is a deep insecurity within the very principal gives males authority over females. PATRIARCHY AND JEALOUSY IN OTHELLO AND THE WINTER'S TALE By DEREK COHEN By accusing their wives of sexual infidelity, Othello and Leon-tes give themselves a desperately needed motive for expressing in words what they both love and fear—the image of their wives making love to other men. Download the full version above. And when I love thee not/ Chaos is come again’ (III.iii.90’92). Don't use plagiarised sources.Get your custom essay just from $11/page The language by Shakespeare in portraying the characters mirrors the reality ad conflict that women found themselves etched in. It has been argued that the representation of Othello shows society’s “hands-off approach” to marital issues. There is no easier path as both involve acts of self-sacrifice (Bartels). In indignation Othello confronts Emilia asking her about Desdemona’s recent actions. Breitenberg explores male fear and jealousy asserting that ‘anxious masculinity is poignantly revealed by instances of male sexual jealousy that necessarily confront the fundamental discrepancy between patriarchal figurations of ‘woman’ and the realities of women’s material and sexual lives’ (381). Patriarchy and Jealousy in Othello and The Winter's Tale Patriarchy and Jealousy in Othello and The Winter's Tale Cohen, Derek 1987-01-01 00:00:00 By accusing their wives of sexual infidelity, Othello and Leontes give themselves a desperately needed motive for expressing in words what they both love and fear-the image of their wives making love to other men. 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