VIEWS: 61 PAGES: 15 POSTED ON: 6/23/2011
Act I, Scene iii 1. As at the opening of scenes 1 and 2, the audience is right in the middle of the action. About what are the Duke and Senators concerned? The Duke and Senators are worried about the size of the Turkish fleet heading toward Cyprus. 2. By what adjective do the Senators and the Duke refer to Othello? What does this indicate? They refer to him as “valiant,” which indicates the large measure of respect they have for him. 3. Why is Brabantio convinced the Moor used drugs and spells on Desdemona? Brabantio finds it inconceivable (unbelievable) that Desdemona would stray so far from her nature by secretly getting involved (falling in love) with the Moor. 4. How does the Senate react to Brabantio’s charges against Othello? What does the Duke say? The Senate is sorry to hear this charge because they have been basing their hopes for the defeat of the Turks on Othello. The Duke asks Othello what he has to say about this. 5. What is the tone of Othello’s response? What does this say about his temperament? We would have expected Othello to be upset by these charges; however, if he is upset, he does not show it. He is calm and even- tempered, suggesting he is a man who keeps his emotions under control. 6. How did Brabantio misread Desdemona’s actions toward the Moor? Brabantio thought his daughter had never looked at the Moor because she was afraid of him. However, she had not looked at him because she was in love and was shy. 7. The Duke tells Brabantio that his (Brabantio’s) saying that Othello used drugs as charms on his daughter is not proof. Then a Senator asks Othello if it is true. What is Othello’s response? Othello requests that Desdemona be brought to the Sagittary and asked whether Brabantio’s charges are true. If she says they are, Othello is willing to accept any punishment, even death. 8. How did Othello win Desdemona’s love? Othello would visit Brabantio’s house and tell stories of his youth and adventure, which enthralled Desdemona. She told him to teach these stories to anyone who wanted to win her heart. He took the hint and proposed marriage to her. 9. The Duke says his daughter, too, would have fallen in love with Othello after hearing him speak. What is Brabantio’s response? Brabantio is still willing to hear what Desdemona has to say. If she confirms “she was half the wooer,” he will object no further. 10. Desdemona speaks truthfully before this group, and Brabantio is convinced she married of her own free will. The Duke then gives Brabantio advice. What is Brabantio’s mood at this point? Brabantio is grief-stricken but resigned. He tells the Duke and Signiory to address the problem of the war in Cyprus. 11. What is Desdemona’s request of the Duke? Desdemona wishes to be allowed to go with Othello to Cyprus. 12. Why do you suppose Brabantio says to Othello, “Look to her, Moor, if thou hast eyes to see; she has deceived her father, and may thee.” Brabantio is bitter and angry that his daughter has eloped; otherwise, it is hard to imagine him saying it. 13. Everyone leaves and Roderigo tells Iago he is going to drown himself. What is Iago’s response? What is Iago’s view of human nature and of love? Iago thinks Roderigo is stupid to talk of drowning himself over a woman. He believes a man’s will is there to make any choice he wishes. As for love, he thinks that it is no more than lust with permission. 14. After Iago tells Roderigo to make a great deal of money and plan on getting Desdemona back, Roderigo leaves and we see into Iago’s thoughts in the soliloquy. What seems to be his opinion of Roderigo? What is a reason hates the Moor? What plan has he formulated? Iago thinks Roderigo a fool, and would not waste time with him except for sport and profit. He also believes that some people think the Moor went to bed with his wife, Emilia. Although he does not know whether it is true, but the mere suspicion of it is enough. He plans to plant the idea in Othello’s head that Desdemona is having an affair with Cassio.
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