Collins, Benchmark Journals

Journal 1

April 23

IAGO (Act 5, Scene 1) Page 254

(Moves to side to show other characters on stage aren’t the focus.)

I have rubbed this young quat almost to the sense,

(He would look at Othello and speak, but Othello can’t hear him.)

And he grows angry. Now, whether he kill Cassio

(Phrased as a question, he may say this TO audience.)

Or Cassio him, or each do kill the other,

Every way makes my gain. 

(All of these lines are sad for Iago. He says this to himself, but it is sad because he knows Roderigo has caught on to his mischief.)

Live Roderigo,

He calls me to a restitution large

Of gold and jewels that I bobbed from him

As gifts to Desdemona.

It must not be. If Cassio do remain

He hath a daily beauty in his life

That makes me ugly. And besides, the Moor

May unfold me to him—there stand I in much peril.

(Said to audience so they know that whatever happens, Othello must die.)

No, he must die. But so, I hear him coming.

Besides my notes, I noticed in this scene/soliloquy that Iago has a lot going on. He is so involved in his secrets that he confused himself. Iago needs to talk to himself through this scene but still addressing the audience so they understand his plan to make sure Othello dies, that he wants Roderigo to live, how he will get Othello to finally snap and kill Cassio for the lies he has been told about him. Iago may be confused if he wants Roderigo to live or not. Roderigo knows that Iago stole gifts from him that were meant for Desdemona. But he can’t let that happen. 

Nowhere in the scene did I see Iago question or speak up to a God. He is so invested in his own ego and power that he has no space to think of someone else watching his every move.

Iago knows that whatever happens, something will work in his favor, because all all, he is the mighty puppet master.

Journal 2

Secondary Character: Cassio

April 24

Appears in Act 2, Scene 3; When Iago gets Cassio drunk, Cassio gets into a fight with Roderigo and Montano, and then Othello sees him drunk and fires Cassio from his job as lieutenant.

Appears in Act 3 with Desdemona when he begs her to convince the Moor to give back his job.

Then, in the scene where Iago hides Othello so that he can talk to Cassio about Bianca, though, Othello believes Cassio is laughing about Desdemona. Cassio speaks of how he is only her customer, and she has fallen in love with him, while describing hsi relationship with Bianca.. This makes Othello angry because he believes Cassio is calling Desdemona a prostitute.

Cassio is extremely vulnerable throughout the play. Iago makes him the main character of his evil plan to break apart Desdemona and Othello, and gets Othello so angry with Cassio that he wants dead.

First hand, Cassio observes very little. He isn’t given the chance to be around because Iago tells lies and makes everyone hate him. Iago tells Cassio to get drunk, tells him to talk to Desdemona to get his job back.

Cassio is a very innocent character. He only wants his job; and in Cyprus he has Bianca. Bianca was his prostitute who fell in love with him. Cassio’s judgement was impaired by Iago and then loss full control over his life.

Journal 3


April 25

Emilia is a middle aged woman, maybe around 35 though. She married Iago at a young age , because of her parents’ pressure for her finding a spouse. She is low maintenance and has really stopped loving Iago. She sees first hand how cruel and conniving he has become, and she has known him a very long time.

Throughout the play, Emilia realizes the difference in how Iago treats her, and knows she can’t cross him. She sees the anger in his eyes and guards herself and Desdemona for as long as she can. When she learns that Iago’s plans worked and Othello killed her, she finally reveals the truth She has never been afraid of Iago, only weary for the lives that would have been harmed. Taking care of Desdemona was Emilia’s way of saying how sorry she was for whatever her future was, because nothing Iago planned could turn out good for anyone but himself.

Journal 4

Prepare for Presentation 

April 29

For this performance and part, I need to express much emotion. I have to move around a little, because in my interpretation of this last scene as Emilia is that she is quite frightened by the fact that Othello killed Desdemona, then she is also with Iago in this scene. Emilia knows about all the lies her husband has told to manipulate people throughout the play.

Emilia is also dying at the end of this scene, so I have to get myself on the ground a certain way. I am stabbed by Iago, and I fall as I say my last line. Then Othello lays next to me, and stabs himself once he knows he killed the woman he loved when she was innocent of everything. 

My prop which is also my costume is quite simple. I made myself an apron that I’m wearing with a nice shirt. Emilia doesn’t have any obvious or even hidding hints about anything she may have on her.

I think that my scene will stand out because it is the final scene with a lot of plot endings. Both Othello and Emilia die, leaving Iago on stage all alone. In the play, he was carried off and said to have been tortured for everything he did. But he isn’t in this shortened script.

As a group we decided on how my part will have to die on stage as well as Othello afterwards.

Journal 5

Analyze Character’s Lines

April 30

“Moor, she was chaste. She loved thee, cruel Moor. So come my soul to bliss as I speak true. Speaking as I think, I die, I die.”

These are Emilia’s last lines when she dies. This is important to the play because,  Emilia was a minor role, but her presence even in 3 scenes, were extremely important. Emilia was told to watch for Desdemona, then her action was one of the reasons that got her killed. Emilia knew all the lies that Iago had told Othello about Desdemona’s life.

I think I delivered this line with less emotion than I could have. It was hard for me to feel the pain that Emilia’s character needed.

My group scene members worked hard while practicing. I think that it would have been even better if we had memorized more lines but that was very hard. There was also not many movements we could find to make the scene more visually interesting, besides dying and just laying on the ground. During the speaking parts, my character was letting Othello know that he had killed the woman he loved, and that Iago had been lying to him since before they came to Cyprus.

Doing the performances didn’t really help me understand the play any better. I know how to read Shakespeare’s writing, but when seeing it performed, I can’t focus on what he was really trying to convey through the words. Seeing the words on paper, stationary, I can focus on exactly everything that was hidden, but important in the play.