light vs darkness in othello

light vs darkness in othello

Light vs. Darkness in Othello I decided to do my Easter presentation on the theme of “Light vs Darkness” in Othello. I choose this subject due to the fact that I feel that it is a key element of the drama due to the fact that so many styles and characters are linked to light and dark in terms of their personalities and in the method they incorporate the aspects into their speech. Usually in daily life, light is typically referenced to individuals who are pure and innocent as it is viewed as the “great” and typically darkness is illustrated as wicked and harmful as it is viewed as the “bad” in people. In the play, Desdemona is the ey character that is surrounded by light as she is viewed as the pure and innocent character while Iago is surrounded by darkness as he seen as the evil and malicious character. The principle of light vs darkness is not only apparent in the characters but is also obvious in the popular theme of the play, Racism. From the start of the play Iago utilizes dark-insulting words to explain Othello and Desdemona’s relationship to Brabantio; “an old black ram is tupping your white ewe”. This quote represents the relationship Shakespeare utilized in between light (white) and arkness (black) to connect it in with the theme of bigotry. Another essential quote that represents the so called angel-like qualities that feature the attributes of light is in the final act of the play when Emilia finds Desdemona’s dead body; “O, the more angel she/And you the blacker devil”. This reveals that Shakespeare wished to produce the illusions that darkness is generally associated to evilness and light is associated with angel-like qualities and innocence. The sign of the Candle in the final act symbolises the end of the world in between light and darkness.

I translate the candle light as representing the last flame of both Othello and Desdemona’s life and relationship. Othello says “put out the light” not only to describe eliminating Desdemona but likewise symbolises the end of his commitment for her and her supposed loss of pureness. In the end, Othello selects to let darkness overcome him and acts on the strategy that Iago put into his head and ends both their lives. With light and dark constantly in conflict, Shakespeare utilizes the images to show a wide variety of emotions and themes, from bitter to jealousy to uncompromising love, to the most devastating form of hate.