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    Hello,

    Okay I hope someone can help because I am really stuck. I have to write an essay on the presentation of women in Othello. I have points on Desdemona but I do not know what to write about for Emilia (apart from being a headstrong woman) and Bianca. Please can someone help me by giving me a few pointers so that I can get started.

    Thanks a bunch .
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    (Original post by sickpuppy2)
    Hello,

    Okay I hope someone can help because I am really stuck. I have to write an essay on the presentation of women in Othello. I have points on Desdemona but I do not know what to write about for Emilia (apart from being a headstrong woman) and Bianca. Please can someone help me by giving me a few pointers so that I can get started.

    Thanks a bunch .
    For Emilia, I would look at her views (cynicism) on marriage/love and men and how this contrasted to conventional women at the time, her informed understanding of the world and society and her relationship with Iago and what this shows about her character.
    You could also contrast Emilia to Desdemona's characters and look at the reasons why Shakespeare may have given the characters certain characteristics and what it brings the the overall play.
    For Bianca, I would look at the women which she represents in society at the time, the tension between her business and her 'love' for Cassio.
    Hope that is of some help, it feels like ages ago that i studied the play!
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    I always reckoned that the women in Othello represented three 'tiers' of society, and Shakespeare used them to compare and contrast between social classes. Also, the women in Othello looked to me as if, together, they would make the 'perfect' woman, Emilia being wise and sensible, Desdemona being beautiful and gentle, and Bianca as the sexual, intimate being.

    You could also mention that all three of the women are in unbalanced relationships, where they care more for their respective men than the men care for them, and they are all rejected in one way or another (e.g. Cassio sees Bianca as just a whore, Iago uses Emilia to fulfil his plans to ruin Othello, and Othello rejects Desdemona's 'honesty' and rejects her love in believing she had been unfaithful).

    I hope that helps, its been a couple of years since i did it for a-level!
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    (Original post by sickpuppy2)
    Hello,

    Okay I hope someone can help because I am really stuck. I have to write an essay on the presentation of women in Othello. I have points on Desdemona but I do not know what to write about for Emilia (apart from being a headstrong woman) and Bianca. Please can someone help me by giving me a few pointers so that I can get started.

    Thanks a bunch .
    Think you need to take a look at Othello from a feminist's perspective and therefore refer to the women as a whole. For example, they are all, at some point in the play referred to as a 'strumpet' and you can then go into this bull about how Shakespeare wrote a play to challenge the social standings of society at the time etc etc. Mention something about how the women are a minor part compared to the men, how the men jump to conclusions and are far less civilised in thought and action than the women, how the women are always victims of the men's actions etc etc. In my view, Shakespeare didn't give a crap about all of this but if that's the question, that's the question. However, nothing to say you can't entirely disagree with the question and then handle the essay from the masculine point of view. Hope this helped.
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    Hello,

    Thank you all so much this has been very helpful
 
 
 
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