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 Othello as a Morality play   

A morality play is one in which the soul of everyman is the battle ground where two powerful forces-good and evil struggle for the possession of the same. This is the subject and theme of all medieval morality plays. This is so universal as element of drama. Good and evil are forces inherent in the mind and soul of man, and he is always either the victim of evil or the happy follower of good. The conflict between good and evil is the basis of the moralitry play.
Othello morality play

Shakespeare's tragedies have been studied as symbols of this morality theme. In his tragedies the soul of the heroes and the heroines are aloof from the forces of their good and evil angels both of whom wish to possess dominate it. Similarly, Othello may be neatly be described as a morality play.The soul of Othello is the object which his evil angel, lago and his good angle, Desdemona, try to dominate. When Othello destroys Desdemona we feel that his evil angle has triumped, and this really is his tragedy. The whole play may be described as one in which at every step lago is attempting with every success to tempt Othello to commit the last crime. We also see how Desdemona rules the soul of Othello most powerfully when he declares-

"When I love thee not, chaos is come again."

That chaos is, of course, the darkness of tragedy in which evil triumps over good. lago's schemes to entrap the soul of Othello provide the material for the plot of the play. Othello's evil angle lago exercises over him. He does not succeed because both Othello and Desdemona suffer and die.

Right from the beginning scene of the play we are made to see that evil in the role of lago is in pursuit of Othello's soul. He does nothing but plot against the peace and happiness of Othello's. This is the nature of evil which always tries to destroy good lago is made to admit, like Satan, that evil itself is his good! He declares directly and indirectly that he cannot abide the presence of company of those who are good, whether it is Othello. Cassio or Desdemona or even his own wife.

However, lago does not remain successful at the end. The power of good is always over evil. The struggle of course is full of pain and agony for the good people but they grow purer and stronger for their suffering. All the elements of a morality play are present in the play, Othello. So Othello is a fine morality play.


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