In The Play Othello Act 2, What News Regarding The War Does Othello Bring?


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The news Othello brings is very brief: "Our wars are done/ The Turks are drowned." This is really all we learn about the war; that Othello was sent out from Venice in the first place to repel the Turkish invasion of Cyprus (which was then owned by the Venetians) that Desdemona followed him in a different ship; and that Othello and his Venetian forces were successful.

Shakespeare gives us no military details in this play. Instead, we are taken straight into the atmosphere of the newly liberated island. Othello gives orders for general rejoicing, bonfires to be lit and feasts prepared. With tragic irony, as he arranges this symbolic festival of peace, he unwittingly makes it possible for Iago to create a different kind of conflict, one that will destroy Othello and Desdemona.

Iago uses the joyful anarchy of the festivities to foster division, rage and chaos, just as he uses the love between Othello and Desdemona to destroy them both.

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