Othello, from Shakespeare’s Canon, remains one of the most significant plays for its treatment of women. The character of Desdemona in the play offers us a subversive and radical perspective that Shakespeare has to offer.
In the beginning of the play we see Desdemona falling in love with a Moor, a black man, Othello. Despite her father being against her decision to marry Othello, Desdemona married him. Today, marrying against one’s father’s agreement might seem relatively easy but back in sixteenth-century, such was not the case.
Therefore, looking from a feminist perspective, Shakespeare’s Othello presents a pro-feminism view at the beginning of the play. However, by the end, one sees the undercutting of that theme as Desdemona becomes a victim of a man’s blindness, doubt and foolishness.
Feminist will have a two very different perspectives when critiquing Othello.On one hand there is the choice to follow your heart and freedom to marry as exercised by Desdemona. On the flip side, gender disparity and sexism is profuse as well. The women are considered scheming and disingenuous and the two feminine characters, Emilia and Desdemona end up getting murdered by their husbands respectively. They are hardly given any voice in politics and governance or social commendation.
Please login or Register to submit your answer