Othello and Iago’s Manipulation

Shakespeare Unlimited

“The way to seduce others is to operate on their individual psychologies and weaknesses.” (Robert Greene’s “The 48 Laws of Power”) Iago makes this observation about his superior Othello:
“He hath a person and a smooth dispose to be suspected—framed to make women false. The moor is of a free and open nature, that thinks men honest that but seem to be so, and will as tenderly be led by the nose as asses are.” The two main points I take out of this speech are that Othello has a mindset framed at accusing women of being unfaithful, and that he takes mens’ honesty fore-granted. Now the striking thing is that Desdemona is as true and loyal as they come and Iago is as treacherous and dishonest as they get, but because Iago preys to his master’s myopic perspective, he’s able to manipulate him for his own gain. The first…

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