Professor Barbara Russell
5 April 2014
Compare and Contrast the differences of Desdemona and Emilia characters
In the play “Othello”, by William Shakespeare, there are two women in the play that attracts our attentions. Desdemona and Emilia are wives of two men of action, Othello the tragic hero and Iago is betrothed to one of the most greatest villian of all time. These two females can be compare and contrast in a number of ways that are part and parcel of what goes on in the play, and how the crisis of the play resolved.
While reading this story, one thing that I encounter about Desdemona and Emily is that they are similar in their honor to their husbands, but are strikingly different because of their motivation that comes from different areas. Desdemona and Emilia husband are in the Venetian military that holds important positions and values. Othello the husband of (Desdemona) is a General in the army with men under his command, and Emilia husband Iago is the ancient of Othello. These ladies exhibit a level of ignorance of the plot in plays around them, and plays into Iago plot of master destruction. They are also loyal wives that wants to please their husbands like a wife are supposed to do. Desdemona wants to appease her husband worries and concerns about her loyalty, and reassuring him. The two women respond to their husband’s bidding, and the both of them show honor and respect to their husband Othello and Iago. The both of them are in very different relationships, and this causes them to have different motivating factors. Desdemona and Othello relationship is based on true love, and wants to see each other happy. But on the other hand, Emelia and Iago relationship is based on necessity, because Iago does not speak kindly nor show her any tenderness. Between the two women own relationship with their husband, Emelia is jealous of the relationship that Desdemona have with Othello, so with this kind of jealousy Emelia has to do what Iago says, and that’s the difference between them.
Desdemona becomes an unquiet victim of male dominance after her marriage, and seems like two different characters. She would be outspoken, rebellious, and suddenly becomes silent. Now in Emelia case, she moves the other way, her husband complains that she want never shut up, but is rather quiet when her and Desdemona have their private conversations. Emelia is the modern woman that Desdemona use to be at the beginning of the play. Another difference between them is that Emelia thinks men exploit women: men are “stomachs and we are the food.” The major contrast of the two women’s attitude towards men and marriage is the subject he subject they discuss about adultery. Emelia as a modern woman, a feminist in her time, and Desdemona is perceived as being old fashion, and a idealist who wants true love in her life. The view on faithless wives differ as well between them, because to Desdemona unchaste is unthinkable and to Emelia she knows that there are faithless wives and she feels that she can explain why some wives fail in chastity and expresses her belief in equality.
There is difference between the two women use of languages that indicates the disparities between both of the women character in the play. When Desdemona husband abuses her faithlessness, her speech is gentle, courteous and refined, so she were not able to argue with him back and explain her point to him. But Emelia has a rough and ready tongue that how she uses her language to defy the fear of death, and with her anger raises her language, it becomes direct and coarse. Desdemona is married to an black man and a hero, and is consider upper class. While Emelia is consider middle class and is Desdemona attendant, something like a maid. The big difference in between Desdemona and Emelia is that, Emelia to my opinion is more experience in life than Desdemona, and the way they talk and act. Emelia also admits that she would be