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Othello tells the story of his life. A fighter since his early years, he was "taken by the insolent foe /  And sold to slavery" (136). Shakespeare makes Othello's story rich in visual detail, but he distorts  geographic facts for dramatic effect. Slave trading was part of general trade along the shipping  routes of East and North Africa, and many slaves were sold in markets in the cities of the Middle  East. Othello was redeemed from slavery — by whom and for what reason are not revealed — and  was left far from his homeland, facts which probably contributed to his career choice as a  professional soldier. Othello also describes his adventures fighting on sea and land. Othello's speech helps us — and the Senators — understand why Desdemona has fallen in love with  him. He capably presents to the Duke and the others a portrait of himself as a man who has spent 
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