Summary Response Outline
Act 2 of Othello by William Shakespeare demonstrates how jealousy and betrayal override love. Iago is so jealous and angry that he was able to forget all his years of friendship with Othello and plot against him. He secretly manipulates the people around him into believing what he wants them to believe. Iago wants Othello’s marriage with Desdemona to fall apart, and he tries his hardest to do that. Clearly, Shakespeare’s Othello illustrates the strong power that jealousy holds on people.
- Make an argument
- Take a position
- Topic sentence: title, author, strong verb, agree/disagree (correctly portrays/ incorrectly portrays), because ___________ and ______________
Othello by William Shakespeare correctly portrays how jealousy and betrayal overpowers love because Iago abandons his loyalty and love towards Othello.
- Claim 1:
- Set-up: Iago’s years of companionship with Othello are discarded as soon as Othello gives Cassio the position that Iago desired.
- what is happening in the story
- Evidence: Lead-in: When Cassio loses his position due to a fight, Iago wants Cassio to use Desdemona as a tool to gain back his position. Iago tells Cassio to “ quotation” ( “Confess yourself freely to her. Importune her help to put you in place again” ( Shakespeare 2.3. 337-339). )
- Explanation of quotation to prove claim Despite his years of serving by the side of Othello, Iago proceeds to tear apart his love with Desdemona, and his relationship with his Lieutenant. Iago’s jealousy for Cassio, casts a shadow upon his faith for Othello.
- Counterclaim 1:
- Set-up However Desdemona and Othello’s relationship shows a contrary view. Their love stays strong through peril and sabotaging.
- Evidence: Lead-in This is prevalent when Othello and Desdemona profess their love for each other openly. When Othello returns, Desdemona runs to him exclaiming “ quotation” ( “ It gives me wonder great as intent To see you here before me. O my soul’s joy!” (2.1 199-200). )
- Explanation of quotation to prove counterclaim Shakespeare proves that Othello and Desdemona remain a force to be reckoned with, regardless of those who try to sabotage their love.
- What are the strengths/ flaws of this argument? A common view is that Othello’s and Desdemona’s marriage shows the power of love. What is often not considered is Cassio and Desdemona’s relationship that seems a little too close for comfort. Soon Othello subjects himself to jealousy. Even the most loyal people sometimes stray from their devotions as Desdemona does. In combination with the example of Iago’s treason, the evidence becomes overwhelming. Jealousy can always ignite into betrayal, and betrayal will overrule love.