What Is The Meaning Behind I Hate The Moor Quote?

Updated 30 September, 2023
In act 1, scene 3 of Othello Iago says the phrase: “I hate the moor”. Blatantly stating his hate, the simple wording speaks of a profound dislike towards Othello; contributing to Iago’s jealous and vengeful motives.
Detailed answer:

In Shakespeare’s Othello, the audience gains the impression Iago through his ability to scheme, deceive and manipulate those around him with the intent of dethroning Othello, achieved in his unconventional and immoral ways. Iago’s hatred towards Othello is a result of the promotion of a younger man, Cassio, above him. Iago believes that he deserves the position more since Cassio is a less experienced soldier. So, Iago plans revenge for Othello by spreading rumors and lies about the protagonist.
In Act I, Scene III of the play Iago states “I hate the Moor, and it is thought abroad my ‘twixt my sheets, h’as done my office. I know not if it be true, but I, for mere suspicion in that kind, will do, as if for surety”. This is the first time that Iago openly admits his distaste for Othello and where his coup to ruin Desdemona’s and Othello’s relationship began.
Iago reveals to the audience, the motivation driving his actions in a soliloquy, not only in making the audience complicit in his scheme, but making apparent of his villainous character and intentions. Blatantly stating his hate, “I hate that moor”, the simple wording speaks of a profound dislike towards Othello; contributing to his jealous and vengeful motives. The fact he had heard rumours of Othello having an affair with his wife, and that he had been overlooked for a promotion; he utilised these motives as a means of justifying for his morally-wrong actions.

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