This creates ananger in Iago, who entraps Othello in a web of deceit. He does this through aseries of suggestions and hesitations that entice and implant images inOthello’s head that lead to his demise. But what is more important is that hegives Othello the motive to murder innocent Desdemona. Iago is constantly likea puppet master, pulling the strings of the people around him.
There are many instances in the play where Iago is left by himself. Heutilises these opportunities by telling his future plans to the audience. Itwould seen that he likes talking to himself about himself, which suggests he hasmuch inner turmoil that he harbors close to his chest, but when the opportunityarises, he describes his deeds with a passion. In the first of these monologues,he makes his intentions perfectly clear. He implies that Othello has had anaffair with his wife by stating “I hate the moor, And it is thought abroad that’twixt my sheets He’s done my office”.
The irony of this statement is that inthe next line he says that he does not know it for a fact, but because hesuspects it, he will act as if for certain! This gives me the impression fromthe beginning, that Iago is insane and exceedingly paranoid, going so far as toset up a cache of murders, just on the suspicion of adultery. Iago was also jealous of the open and loving relationship that Othellohad. When Othello and Desdemona are reunited after the journey to Cyprus, hekisses her in full view of everyone. Iago treats his wife as an object and sheknows it. In Act three, Scene four, she tells Desdemona “They are but stomachs,we are but food, and when they are full, they belch us”.
In Iagos’ racist mind, he views his superior, Othello, as being of aninferior creed. He sees him as possessing an evil mind and soul, and having noright to marry the very white and very naive Desdemona. He does not even thinkof Othello as a human being, but as an animal. This can be seen when he shoutsto Brabantio “An old black ram is tupping your white ewe. . .
you’ll have yournephews neigh to you; you’ll have coursers for cousins, and jennets for germans”. Iago also has a hatred of Cassio, who was given the promotion that Iago thoughtof as his own. To get his retribution, he envelopes Cassio in his vengeanceplot so that he can receive the title of lieutenant after his disgrace. Iago is a very cunning man. He plays the characters in the story like a game ofchess.
He uses his various pawns to do the dirty work so as to destroy thegeneral and his wife. The worst of these is when he tells Emilia to steal thehandkerchief, because when she finds out what it was used for, she feelsresponsible for Desdemona’s death. From scene to scene he is always in thecompany of a different person, spreading his lies further and further. He actsas a noble person, and everyone thinks of Iago as their ally.
He uses everyopportunity possible to create a feeling of distrust, so that everyone isparanoid. Being a master of deception, this was not difficult. He manages tooperate successfully, until Emilia his wife, unravels his sinister plan but itis already too late, as Desdemona is dead and Iago has gained his revenge fromOthello.