close
test_template

Misogyny in Othello by William Shakespeare

About this sample

About this sample

close

Words: 917 |

Pages: 2|

5 min read

Published: Jan 15, 2019

Essay grade:
Good
arrow downward Read Review

Words: 917|Pages: 2|5 min read

Published: Jan 15, 2019

Essay grade:
Good
arrow downward Read Review

Misogyny can be defined as the cultural attitude of hatred for females simply due to the fact that they are female and are seen as inferior to men in the Elizabethan society, because of misogyny, women live in a society dominated by men. As we go through Othello we can find that the women characters are presented according to the expectation of the Elizabethan society. During this time women didn’t enjoy the same amounts of freedom as they do today. There were strict rules how women should behave at home and in public. Men ran all of the institutions and were considered as the head of households. Othello is a play in which these unequal positions are clearly portrayed. The way women behave and conduct themselves in Othello is linked to the abstract expectations of Shakespeare’s Elizabethan society and the patriarchal society that he creates by the lack of representation that is given to women in the story, the portrayal of female suffering and sexual possession.

'Why Violent Video Games Shouldn't Be Banned'?

Firstly, the lack of representation that is given to women in Othello is an illustration of the marginalisation of women. The play contains only three female characters: Desdemona, Emilia and Bianca. While the male cast list is relatively extensive. Within this extensive male cast there are characters with little or even no impact on the story, these are characters such as sailors and soldiers. They don’t contribute to the plot or theme in any way. While these male characters with little or no impact are introduced, wives of important male characters such as Brabantio are not. This minority of female characters exhibit a clear vision of the social climate of the play. Comparatively important female characters are considered secondary to undistinguished male characters, such as Graziano, Brabantio’s kinsman. This implements the idea that women are victims because of the male dominated social conditioning. So, the lack of female characters shows the social climate during the times of Elizabethan society. Secondly, the portrayal of female suffering in Othello displays the low and marginalised spot they posses on the social ranking. Forms of female suffering within the story are all caused by men. The social condition in the story appears that men can do whatever they want without a suitable punishment, such as death. Meanwhile women can’t perform an action that can be considered as offensive in the eyes of their husband or another male without any (deathly) consequences.

This is shown in the killing of Desdemona, who was accused of being unfaithful, without any proof and the killing of Emila who was not supportive of the dishonesty of her husband. The consequences of offensive acts are completely different for male characters, such as Iago, who has been dishonest and evil throughout the entire story. Adding to that, Cassio hasn’t faced any punishments either, while being a “womanizer” in the story. Even when facing death the female characters still act like they are subordinate to their husbands, as can be seen in the scenes of the deaths of both Desdemona and Emilia. Emilia sings a song about forsaken lovers and Desdemona doesn’t want to admit she has been wounded by Othello and states that she wounded herself. In conclusion, Shakespeare wanted to portray the low spot of females on the social ranking, by including female suffering into the story. Lastly, sexual possession is a central issue within the play asserting the sexual dominance of men. Men are placed as the active and primary initiator of sexual exertions. Even women who have husbands and fathers in powerful positions are still considered by Iago to be prostitutes and objects. This can be seen in the second setting of Othello, which is the island of Cyprus. If a women does an attempt to have any sexual contact she is often labeled in unclompentary terms.

Iago, the character with the most misogynistic attitude states in the first scene to Desdemona and Emilia “You rise to play and go to bed to work.” This shows the oppressive attitude towards women. Marriage is described as an act of “purchase”: a woman is bought by her husband, effectively as a favour, and is expected to fulfil his sexual desires in return for the privilege. The feelings of female characters, such as Desdemona and Emilia are completely disregarded in the story. The women are just objects to further fulfill male desires. Iago is an extreme example, he shows, through his thinking, the fact that women, in both Elizabethan and Venetian society, are sensed as possessions, secondary to the desires of men. In conclusion, Othello is linked to the abstract expectations of Shakespeare’s Elizabethan society and the patriarchal society that he creates by the lack of representation that is given to women in the book, the portrayal of female suffering and sexual promiscuity and possession. The play contains only three female characters: Desdemona, Emilia and Bianca. Comparatively important female characters are considered secondary to undistinguished male characters.

Get a custom paper now from our expert writers.

Forms of female suffering within the story is all caused by men. The social condition in the story appears that men can do whatever they want without a suitable punishment, such as death. Meanwhile women can’t perform an action that can be considered as offensive. Sexual promiscuity and possession is a central issue within the play asserting the sexual dominance of men. Even women who have husbands and fathers in powerful positions are still considered by Iago to be prostitutes and objects. We can find that the women characters are presented according to the expectation of the Elizabethan society.

Image of Dr. Oliver Johnson
This essay was graded by
Dr. Oliver Johnson
Essay’s grade:
Good
What’s grading
minus plus
Expert Review
The essay explains misogyny in William Shakespeare's play "Othello" and how it is portrayed through the absence of women, female suffering, and sexual possession. However, the essay lacks a clear and concise introduction and conclusion that could help readers understand the central argument of the essay. In terms of the organization, the essay can be improved by breaking down the text into paragraphs that are more focused on specific ideas. The sentence structure and grammar are mostly clear, but there are a few errors and awkward sentences that could be revised. The essay's voice is formal and appropriate for an academic essay.
minus plus
What can be improved
The essay presents a clear understanding of misogyny in "Othello" by discussing the lack of representation of women, female suffering, and sexual possession. However, the essay's structure could be improved by breaking down the text into smaller paragraphs that focus on specific ideas. For instance, the essay could be organized into paragraphs discussing the portrayal of female characters, the representation of female suffering, and the theme of sexual possession. This would make the essay easier to read and help readers understand the main ideas of each section. The essay's introduction lacks a clear thesis statement that could help readers understand the central argument of the essay. Instead, the essay begins with a general definition of misogyny and a brief summary of the Elizabethan society's expectations for women. A clear thesis statement could be added to the introduction to guide the reader throughout the essay. The essay's conclusion provides a brief summary of the essay's main points but lacks a clear and concise statement that could help readers understand the significance of the essay's argument. The conclusion could be improved by restating the thesis statement and summarizing the key points of the essay to help readers understand the central argument. The essay's sentence structure and grammar are mostly clear, but there are a few awkward sentences and grammatical errors that could be revised. For example, in the first paragraph, the sentence "As we go through Othello we can find that the women characters are presented according to the expectation of the Elizabethan society" could be revised to "As we read through Othello, we can observe that female characters are presented according to the expectations of Elizabethan society." This revision makes the sentence clearer and eliminates the awkward phrasing. The essay's voice is formal and appropriate for an academic essay. However, there are a few instances where the essay could benefit from using more precise and varied vocabulary. For example, the essay frequently uses the word "male" and "female" to refer to characters. These terms could be replaced with more specific words like "men" and "women" to make the essay more engaging and varied. Overall, the essay provides a clear understanding of misogyny in "Othello," but it could be improved by adding a clear thesis statement and conclusion, breaking the text into more focused paragraphs, revising awkward sentences and grammatical errors, and using more precise and varied vocabulary.

Cite this Essay

Misogyny in Othello by William Shakespeare. (2019, January 15). GradesFixer. Retrieved July 16, 2024, from https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/misogyny-in-othello-by-william-shakespeare/
“Misogyny in Othello by William Shakespeare.” GradesFixer, 15 Jan. 2019, gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/misogyny-in-othello-by-william-shakespeare/
Misogyny in Othello by William Shakespeare. [online]. Available at: <https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/misogyny-in-othello-by-william-shakespeare/> [Accessed 16 Jul. 2024].
Misogyny in Othello by William Shakespeare [Internet]. GradesFixer. 2019 Jan 15 [cited 2024 Jul 16]. Available from: https://gradesfixer.com/free-essay-examples/misogyny-in-othello-by-william-shakespeare/
copy
Keep in mind: This sample was shared by another student.
  • 450+ experts on 30 subjects ready to help
  • Custom essay delivered in as few as 3 hours
Write my essay

Still can’t find what you need?

Browse our vast selection of original essay samples, each expertly formatted and styled

close

Where do you want us to send this sample?

    By clicking “Continue”, you agree to our terms of service and privacy policy.

    close

    Be careful. This essay is not unique

    This essay was donated by a student and is likely to have been used and submitted before

    Download this Sample

    Free samples may contain mistakes and not unique parts

    close

    Sorry, we could not paraphrase this essay. Our professional writers can rewrite it and get you a unique paper.

    close

    Thanks!

    Please check your inbox.

    We can write you a custom essay that will follow your exact instructions and meet the deadlines. Let's fix your grades together!

    clock-banner-side

    Get Your
    Personalized Essay in 3 Hours or Less!

    exit-popup-close
    We can help you get a better grade and deliver your task on time!
    • Instructions Followed To The Letter
    • Deadlines Met At Every Stage
    • Unique And Plagiarism Free
    Order your paper now