112 - with Othello's real personal sufferings of the...

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Iago brings Cassio to Desdemona, and they discuss Othello's anger. Emilia  speaks of irrational jealousy: "But jealous souls will not be answer'd so; / They  are not ever jealous for the cause, / But jealous for they are jealous: @'tis a  monster, begot upon itself, born on itself." (157–160). These lines echo Iago's "It  is the green ey'd monster which doth mock that meat it feeds on" (III.3, 170–171),  hinting that Iago and Emilia have talked or argued about jealousy in their own  married life. Meanwhile Cassio and Bianca argue over a handkerchief Cassio  found in his lodgings. Bianca, recognizing a woman's handkerchief, jealously  suspects that Cassio has a new love. Desdemona's straightforward trust contrasts with Othello's sulky suspicion.  Emilia's view of jealousy as a natural characteristic of irrational men contrasts 
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Unformatted text preview: with Othello's real personal sufferings of the previous scene. Desdemona and Emilia discuss possible reasons for Othello's bad mood and suspend judgment for lack of sure evidence. This contrasts with Othello's train of thought in the previous act, where, with less actual evidence before him, he changed his whole view of himself and his marriage. • The dramatic irony is that the most jealous indignation is expressed over offenses that did not happen: Othello jealous about his wife; Bianca jealous about Cassio; Iago formerly jealous about Emilia. Each character attempts to cope as an individual, except Emilia, who has a theory that jealousy is a constituent part of masculinity. The evidence before her own eyes backs up her assessment....
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