Comparing and Contrast Emilia and Desdemona’s love for their husband
“I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear. ” (Martin Luther King, Jr. ) In the play Othello this quote shows relation to how love occurs among the main characters. This is highlighted though the relationship that Emilia and Desdemona have with their respective husbands. Throughout, the relationship of these characters with their spouses will be analyzed. The relationship between Emilia and her husband Iago will be expressed as well as the relationship between Desdemona and her husband Othello. Then the similarities and differences between the two relationships will be compared.
Emilia and Iago had a very complex relationship. They do not have a strong and equal relationship displaying love. This is not what one would expect to exist between a man and his wife. Iago uses Emilia as his puppet; he mocks and disrespects her. He appears to not care much about her well being. This is seen in the lack of affection he shows to his wife. Iago seems as though he does not have the ability to love anything or anyone. However Emilia’s feelings towards her husband completely different from the negative feelings he has towards her.
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Emilia’s love towards Iago is filled with so much passion and devotion. She tries her utmost best to please Iago. “I nothing but to please his fantasy. “(Act 3. Scene 3) This is seen when she steals Desdemona’s handkerchief hoping her husband would be appreciative. She is experiencing unrequited love. This is odd as the object of her affections is her husband,whom has no feelings towards her. He is undeserving of her love,as Emilia could be offering all this love to one whom actually deserves it. This is a good character trait in Emilia.
Due to her not getting the love she wants from husband, she develops the belief that women should be able cheat on there husbands. Subsequently they had a rocky relationship,even though Emilia really did love her husband. In contrast, Desdemona and Othello had a powerful relationship. This is seen in the manner they chose to get married. To choose to elope and get married without your father’s blessing is a big undertaking for Desdemona. However she went through with it. She eloped with him because in her eyes she believed that he was the perfect man for her.
They have strong “young love”. In the beginning of the play Othello would worship Desdomona “She lov’d me for the dangers I had pass’d, And I lov’d her that she did pity them. ” (Act I. Scene 3). Emilia is in love with Othello and completely devoted to him. She is not with him for his looks,but with him for his heart. Othello cherished Emilia and treated her like a princess. However, Othello love for Desdemona was too strong that made him think Desdemona was cheating on him. Ultimately this pushes him into doing something that leads to Desdemona’s death.
Therefore Emilia and Desdemona’s relationship with their husband was completely different. This is seen in the way they interact with their respective spouses and generally what their views on their spouses were. The major difference between Emilia’s relationship and Desdemona’ relationship is that in Emilia’s relationship the love she had for her husband was not mutual, while Desdemona’s own was unlike that. Desdemona actually loved her husband,and he her. Also Iago used Emilia for his gain. “To have a foolish wife. ”(Act 3.
Scene 3) The manner in which Iago treats Emilia is terrible as he verbally abuses her. In contrast Othello and Desdemona’s love was very strong. “But that I love the gentle Desdemona, I would not my unhoused free condition, put into circumscription and confine for the sea’s worth” (Act 1, Scene 2) He express his love for Desdemona to her father, even though he was against their love. Another difference between the two relationships, is that Desdemona is in an interracial marriage and Emilia is not. Othello is a black man,while Desdemona is white.
This is not a usual union at this time. Desdemona refuses to marry rich, white men or handsome Veneration men that most would expect her to marry. She chooses instead to marry Othello. Emilia chose to do what is expected and marry a man of her own kind. Unlike Desdemona, who chooses to step outside of her comfort zone. As a result leaving the two with very different dynamics of a relationship. The similarities between Emilia relationship and Desdemona relationship is that they both are married to men who are involved in the army.
They are both patriotic as they try to defend their nation, from anything that tries to. They both have a huge responsibility in protecting there country from war. Desdemona and Emilia both had downfalls in there relationship. The downfalls in Emilia’s marriage is the way in which she allowed herself to be treated. Since the beginning of the play, she knew that she wasn’t getting treated properly by her husband,nonetheless she stayed with him. Desdemona’s downfall began when her husband stopped trusting her.
The way he began asking her so many questions and developing that huge rage towards her,led to the fall in there relationship. For him to accuse her of infidelity was the breaking point in their relationship, while Emilia’s fall started from the day she married Iago. Overall, love plays a huge role in the difference between these two dominant relationships in the play. It plays a big contribution to the characters downfalls. Emilia searches for love from the person ,whom should be offering it to her the most.
This as a result leads her to think that adultery is okay. In addition Othello’s love towards Desdemona caused a conflict between them and lead to the death of Desdemona, Emilia and Othello himself. Love has a strong impact to the characters relationship, and hence causes their ending. This play was able to show how love can alter persons perception of reality. Ultimately leading to decisions ran by our emotions. Instead of being well-thought out and planned.