Literature Study GuidesOthelloAct 3 Scene 2 Summary

Othello | Study Guide

William Shakespeare

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Othello | Act 3, Scene 2 | Summary



At the citadel, Othello, Iago, and some gentlemen stroll together. Othello gives Iago some letters to deliver for him, and Iago takes the letters: "These letters give, Iago, to the pilot/And by him do my duties to the Senate." Othello tells the gentlemen that he is ready to see the fortification: "This fortification, gentlemen, shall we see 't?"


This interaction shows two things about Iago. First, he is trusted by Othello. While Othello's trust has already been made known, it is important to reiterate it just before Scene 3, in which Iago uses that trust to undermine Othello's faith in his wife's fidelity. Second, Othello uses Iago as a conveyor of information. This is significant because Iago manipulates others by inventing and spreading misinformation to influence their behavior, rather than taking a more direct action. His role as a person who controls information is an essential piece of his operation.

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