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A domestic tragedy is a kind of tragedy that deals with the private life of ordinary people. Othello is a fine domestic tragedy by William Shakespeare. It deals with the personal life of Othello and Desdemona. 

Othello deals with the domestic life of Othello and Desdemona. It shows how it fell into ruin by the plot of a villain,  Iago. Othello suffers hellish torture and is inspired by Iago. He ultimately destroys first Desdemona and then himself. This is the plot of the tragedy.  So it has a similarity to the plot of a domestic tragedy and critics have called the play a domestic drama.  But the similarity is superficial. It must be remembered that Othello is not a private individual. He is descended from the royal family. He is a soldier and military general of great ability and renown. In no way he can be regarded as a private individual -like the hero of a domestic tragedy. Othello is not a common individual. He is a man of exceptional nature. His qualities of head and heart raise his head and shoulders above the common run of mankind. He is noble and daring. When such as exceptional individual falls,  his fall produces the pity and fear proper to the true tragedy. In a domestic tragedy,  the action of the drama moves on a common everyday level. The characters are near to us and so is the action. All this cannot be said of Othello. Its action does not take place in familiar England. But we are transported to romantic Venice and remote Cyprus.

However, Othello is not the type of domestic drama that appeals only to our sense of pathos and satire but it arouses in us the true emotions of pity and fear. It is not the private life of married people that affects the fate and fortune of true lovers turned tragic by the forces of evil embodied in Iago. 


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