Othello Act 2 Summary Response Outline
- Topic sentence: title, author, strong verb, main idea
- Othello Act 2, written by William Shakespeare, demonstrates how jealousy and greed can be motivation to manipulate other people to seek revenge.
- Supporting ideas to prove main ideas
- This act demonstrates how jealousy and greed control the actions of the character Iago. Iago is jealous of Cassio’s place as lieutenant, a position he desperately wants. His jealousy leads him to take steps of revenge against Cassio and ultimately Othello.
- Explanation of ideas
- In Shakespeare’s Othello, Iago is portrayed as a scheming character determined to seek revenge. Iago convinces Roderigo that he should pick a fight with Cassio in hopes of getting him demoted, which would result in less competition for Desdemona. Rodrigo willingly goes along with the scheme due to his strong feelings for Desdemona.
- Concluding sentence: restate main idea
- Shakespeare’s Othello clearly illustrates the drastic measures people will take to seek revenge and how the powerful emotions of jealousy and greed can impact one’s behavior.
(Claim, counter claim, rebuttal)
- Topic sentence: title, author, strong verb, agree/disagree (correctly portrays/ incorrectly portrays), because ___________ and ______________
- In Act 2 of Othello by William Shakespeare, Othello does not deserve to be the victim of Iago’s revenge plot, because Iago is a man filled with jealousy from inadequate motivation.
- Claim 1:
- Through Act 2 of Othello, Iago is shown as a character filled with jealousy and greed. This act also details the steps he is willing to take to cause the downfall of other characters in the play. Shakespeare shows Iago manipulating other characters into doing tasks that allow Iago’s master plan to take effect. This ultimately helps Iago exact his view of justice on Othello and Cassio. Iago stops at nothing to see his plan through.
- Evidence: Lead-in “ quotation”
- Iago tells Roderigo, “Provoke him that he may, for even out of that will I cause these of Cyprus to mutiny, whose qualification shall come into no true taste again but by the displanting of Cassio. So shall you have a shorter journey to your desires by the means I shall then have to prefer them, and the impediment most profitably removed, without the which there were no expectation of our prosperity” (Shakespeare 295-302).
- Explanation of quotation to prove claim
- Iago is encouraging Roderigo to provoke Cassio so the people of Cyprus will form a negative opinion of Cassio. Iago hopes this will get Cassio removed as lieutenant. Iago is telling Roderigo that to get what he wants, he must get Cassio out of the way. Iago is making Roderigo think that he is doing this for himself and not for Iago.
- Counterclaim 1: However, ....
- Jealousy and greed are emotions that can be easily overcome and do not have to control one’s future actions or prevent one from displaying kindness. Act 2 of Othello by William Shakespeare demonstrates how Iago does care for other people and can show them kindness even if jealousy and greed cloud his judgment.
Evidence: Lead-in “ quotation”
- Iago gives Cassio a pep talk after he loses his lieutenant position. He says to Cassio, “Come, you are too severe a moraler. As the time, the place, and the condition of this country stands, I could heartily wish this had not befallen. But since it is as it is, mend it for your own good” (Shakespeare 318-321).
- Explanation of quotation to prove counterclaim
- Iago is telling Cassio that he is being too hard on himself and that he wishes none of this had happened to Cassio. Iago is encouraging Cassio to ask for his position back. This is something a good friend would say to cheer you up after something bad happens.
- What are the strengths/ flaws of this argument?
- Rebuttal Progression: Some may think that negative emotions such as jealousy and greed could not be more powerful than positive emotions. Readers and watchers of Othello, written by William Shakespeare, cannot deny that positive emotions such as relief, happiness, and thankfulness are preferred even in a story which details a person willing to take revenge on anyone without expressing a clear motivation. However, negative emotions cause the major conflicts between multiple characters in Othello. Without these conflicts, William Shakespeare’s play might not be so impactful. Negativity causes people such as Iago to take extreme measures, especially when it comes to seeking revenge. Therefore, some may say that Iago’s kindness is just him manipulating people to achieve what he wants and even his kindness is an attempt to ultimately harm others.
- Concluding sentence: restate main idea