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Copy of Analyzing Literary Devices in Othello

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Chandler Dell

on 10 June 2013

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Transcript of Copy of Analyzing Literary Devices in Othello

Analyzing Irony In Othello Shakespeare's plays rely largely on irony. His skillful use of irony is quite frequently used in Othello. There are four main forms of irony:
Dramatic Irony
Verbal Irony
Situational Irony
Cosmic Irony
Three forms of irony are present in Othello, excluding cosmic irony. What is Irony? Irony is the use of words to express something different from and often opposite of their literal meaning. Here are some examples of irony:
Drawing trees on paper
Spending your life making fire extinguishers, then dying in a fire
Trappers getting trapped in a room
A hunter getting shot
Washing your car just before it rains What is Dramatic Irony?

Dramatic irony means that the reader knows that something is happening in the story, but the characters have no knowledge of it. How is dramatic irony conveyed in Othello? Verbal Irony
Verbal irony is a figure of speech in which the intended meaning of a statement is different from the meaning that the words appear to express. It is the contrast between what a character says and what they actually mean. It is dramatically ironic that the readers of Othello know that Desdemona is loyal and honest, but Othello believes none of these things as Iago is constantly filling his head with lies and doubts. Iago tells Othello that Cassio was bragging to him about sleeping with Desdemona to anger Othello, even though it isn't true. "With her, on her, what you will"(4.1.36) is what Iago tells Othello to make him believe that Desdemona is having an affair with Cassio. An example of verbal irony used in Othello... Iago says to Othello, "My lord, you know I love you"(3.3.121). This is an example of verbal irony because Iago truly hates Othello and will try anything and everything to ruin his life. To this, Othello responds, "I think thou dost; and for I know thou'rt full of love and honesty"(3.3.122-23). This shows that Iago has Othello's trust and he believes that he has Iago's loyalty. Situational Irony This is a form of irony in which actions have an effect that is opposite from what was intended, so the outcome is opposite of what was expected. Some examples from the text... The first example of situational irony in Othello is when Brabantio warns Othello that Desdemona will deceive him too, just as she deveived her own father. Othello responds, "my life upon her faith!"(1.3.290). This is situationally ironic because later on in the story, Othello end up suspecting that she is no longer being faithful to him. It is even more ironic when Montano tells Iago that Othello, "prizes the virtue that appears in Cassio, and looks not on his evils."(2.3.95-96) because Othello begins to suspect Cassio of being disloyal to him by thinking that he is sleeping with Desdemona, and ends up wanting him dead because of it. Throughout the story of Othello, Shakespear used a lot of irony. This added humour to the story, a lot of suspense and plot twists, and made the story more interesting overall for the readers. How I analyzed the text: As I read through Othello, I examined and listed key quotes that I found to be interesting and further revealed the personality of the characters.
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