I believe Iago has nothing to do with Othello's downfall as Othello is an easily mislead man who is easily influenced. Not only did Iago not directly say Desdemona was having an affair, he neither didn’t give proof to confirm the rumours. By Othello believing the lies, it surfaces his inability to trust and have faith in his own wife. Othello is written by William Shakespeare and was set in Cyprus and Venice during the 16th century. It is about a well-respected military soldier who due to lies and deceits killed his wife for no reason and after turned the knife towards himself. The play illustrates how much one could be polluted in such little time; with the ‘facts’ based upon suspicions and assumptions from a source who was determined to kill him. Venice is a town in where Othello and Desdemona wed. It was convenient for the beginning part of the play as it was one of the most powerful cities of the time. It had a thriving atmosphere and was noted for the pleasures it offered in the way of arts and music. However, Cyprus is an alternative to Venice. It is a foreign, strange exotic place which is desolated and has a lot of open space. Since the war finished before it begun, the main focus reverts to Othello and Desdemona.
Iago is introduced to the audience as a jealous man who finds faults in others, pointing out the missing qualities in him. He is seen as a trouble maker as he wants to go and disturb a resting man to start a commotion.
‘Call up her father.
Rouse him. Make after him, Poison his delight,
Proclaim him in the streets. Incense her kinsmen,’
He is a sneaky and two-faced character as when he proposes his exit, he explains his plan; to show signs of loyalty and affection, even it it’s just an act.
‘I must show out a flag and sign of love,
Which is indeed a sign.’
As an audience, the first impression we get of Iago is he is a jealous man but can sometimes be making a good point. But we can’t make a final judgement as his true characteristics have not yet surfaced. We learn through Iago that Othello is a terrible man as he supposedly stole Brabantio’s innocent daughter, Desdemona, and married her during the night; with the use of witchcraft and black magic to posses her into marrying him as Brabantio says;
‘O thou foul thief, where hast thou stowed my daughter?
Damned as thou art, thou hast enchanted her!’
We learn Othello through Iago that he is an easy target to manipulate because he is so open:
‘And will as tenderly be led by th’ nose
As asses are.’
Othello can be lead into anything just because he believes everybody is a good honest person. In some cases, like Iago’s, this is a bad thing as he can be fooled easily by false assumptions. He also says he is an open and a straightforward person.
“The Moor is of free and open nature
That thinks men honest that but seem to be so…”
He is approachable and straight forward man who supposedly has favourites, unfair, and always and must have his own way. We soon find out...