Vision Explored in Othello and Oedipus Sight Essay

Pages: 3 (927 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: ≈ 4  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: College Junior  ·  Topic: Literature

¶ … Vision Explored in Othello and Oedipus

Sight, as wonderful as it is, cannot help the individual that refuses to see circumstances around him or her. Some people can be blind to what is happening in their lives with their eyes wide open. Two plays that demonstrate how vision has nothing to do with sight are William Shakespeare's Othello and Sophocles' Oedipus. Othello and Oedipus are blessed with eyes that see but they do not have the vision they need to make rational, sound judgments when it comes to their lives. They cannot see things as they actually are and are cursed with uncertain vision as a result. Both authors deal with this uncertain vision similarly, demonstrating how the truth is dangerous and deadly. Both men encounter difficulty when it comes to facing and handling the truth and they illustrate the frailty of man when driven by emotion.

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Fate becomes a significant aspect of examining these two plays because both men were in control of the circumstances around them. Oedipus was not going to give up until he knew the truth and Othello felt he had enough evidence to convict Desdemona. Both men are responsible for their own fate yet they become so wrapped up in their "missions," they forget the power they have over their own lives. Othello allows Iago to fill his mind with doubt. Desdemona and her truth are essentially worthless because it does not exact the same amount of power over Othello as his jealousy does. In short, his jealousy crushes her love with one fail swoop. To make a point about blindness, Sophocles makes Tiresias physically blind. He may be blind but he knows the truth and this truth gets him absolutely nowhere. Upon hearing it, Oedipus becomes enraged and claims Tiresias is full of nothing but obscenities. Yet he explains things clearly when he tells Oedipus with perfect vision, he is "blind to the corruption" (Sophocles 471) of his life. Through both of these men, Sophocles allows us to see how easy it is to formulate false truths from information we gather that is influenced by our perceptions and emotions. Both men blow their chances and can blame no one but themselves for their fate.

Essay on Vision Explored in Othello and Oedipus Sight, Assignment

One of the primary differences with both plays is how the main characters interact with their versions of the truth. Othello cannot tell truth from reality because Iago is there to bring confusion. Iago is sneaky and takes advantage of Othello's trusting nature, which demonstrates that one can be trusting and very stupid. Othello allows Iago to influence him because he thinks Iago cares for him but that concern is fake. Iago is a convincing actor and he pulls the proverbial wool over Othello's eyes with little more than hearsay. He… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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How to Cite "Vision Explored in Othello and Oedipus Sight" Essay in a Bibliography:

APA Style

Vision Explored in Othello and Oedipus Sight.  (2011, January 30).  Retrieved May 28, 2020, from

MLA Format

"Vision Explored in Othello and Oedipus Sight."  30 January 2011.  Web.  28 May 2020. <>.

Chicago Style

"Vision Explored in Othello and Oedipus Sight."  January 30, 2011.  Accessed May 28, 2020.