I Will Kill Thee and Love Thee After

Location: Boston, Massachusetts, United States

I'm a first year graduate student at Tufts University in the Drama department.

Friday, September 30, 2005


Something ridiculous happened to Mozilla this afternoon, so that it completely erased all of my Bookmarks, as well as all my addresses in the navigation bar (or whatever the hell it's called). Annoying. It is still worlds better than IE.

I just got back from seeing History of Violence. All I can say is What the Fuck?!?!?! I enjoyed it immensely, but I walked out of the theatre in a complete stupor. And I got to see it for free :)
I saw another preview for Domino and I'm just about peeing my pants waiting for that damn movie to come out. I've heard it's really bad, but whatever.

Sunday we're going to see Mirrormask, which is very, very exciting. And next week is Serenity.

Tonight I went to a two hour special yoga class, where we focused on one pose. It was so hard, but such a great class.

This entry has descended into nonsense.

Monday, September 26, 2005

Observe disease in signatures

It has been a long weekend. Mostly pleasant, but very long, and I'm glad things can get back to normal. At least until Thursday when Erik's mother and aunt come to visit. The problem with visitors is that, though they are mostly fun, they decide when a good time to come visit you will be, and it is always smack in the middle of things.

But the highlights of my weekend:

Thursday we went to the Harvard theatre library, which turned out to be completely amazing. We saw things that belonged to Oscar Wilde, Orson Welles, Tennessee Williams, etc. We came home and napped, then picked Amanda up from the airport, right on time. We had the first of many crappy meals at the Cambridge Commons, but they did have some decent pumpkin cheesecake. Before bed Amanda and I watched Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade.
<>Friday I woke up early to do some reading, went for a shot appointment at the health center, and went to see Tim Burton's Corpse Bride. My advise to anyone who wants to see it is don't. Rent Nightmare Before Christmas instead. It seems to be a growing trend of late that Tim Burton's films are utterly pointless. Big Fish. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Etc. We wasted time going to Whole Foods, so we had to rush around and eat a crappy dinner to get to the Neil Gaiman signing on time. Neil was wonderful and funny, as usual, and the line wasn't nearly as long as in NYC. After the reading and a few hours of waiting we took a break and went window shopping.

Saturday I woke up too early with too little sleep, then Amanda and I went to Tufts, because I had to work during the GSC apple picking trip. It was fun, and I didn’t have to do much work, but I was very tired. Got lots of apples, cider donuts, cider, etc. After that we all went shopping. I bought a new pair of awesome boots from Aldo (they kind of look like riding boots). I also got red and black hair dye, and when I came home I redyed the top part of my hair dark red (it fades so damn fast) and I colored the underlayer black. We went to Sugar and Spice for dinner. I didn’t get lucky with food AGAIN and apparently ordered the wrong thing for dinner. Then we went to the Cambridge mall. I got some very inexpensive clothes (three shirts and a pair of pants) and a notebook I wanted. We came home, pigged out on sweet cream iced cream with fudge dinosaurs in it, and watched Saved. I went to bed early and woke up late. For some reason I had terrible dreams.

On Sunday I actually managed to do some work, talked to Liz on the phone for awhile, and we went to the galleria again. I bought two shirts on sale; one of them is a very pretty silver negligee type shirt. The second is a cream lace tank top that looks a lot like a corset. We had another crappy meal, this time at the cheesecake factory, came home, and I read Oedipus Rex for class. I talked to my dad on the phone for awhile, which was long overdue, and then Amanda and I ordered food from a surprisingly good pizza/sub place, and watched Love Actually.

That's actually my entire weekend, not just some highlights, but whatever.

I was just reading some of Ebert's reviews, and he has good things to say about History of Violence. I can't wait for it to come out!

Saturday, September 24, 2005

I Want to Die.

I really, really want to die right now. I got about five and a half hours of sleep last night, but they were the shittiest five and a half hours I have ever had. I woke up a million times and had all these dreams about Neil Gaiman at a Sci-fi/horror convention. I had to wake up this early, because today the Graduate Student Council is having a fucking apple picking trip. And I idiotically agreed to work from 8:30 - 3. Basically all I have to do is go (take a bus to the farm with everyone else), sit around until lunch, and then help set up and clean up lunch. I'm making pretty good money, I'm just exhausted and I have so much to do. Amanda is coming with me, so it shouldn't be completely miserable, but I'm going to have to bring homework, which kind of sucks.

I'm just kind of mad that it is going to take up so much of the day. Soon after we get home we're taking Erik out for dinner as an early birthday present, and tonight we're most likely going to the Humanwine show. Too busy.

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

*Grinds Teeth*

Right now, I'm going to be totally and unashamedly negative so that I can get on with the rest of my day. I like school, for the most part, but this is definitely an anti-school rant. The one class I don't have any problem with is Classical Dramatic Theory. I have nothing bad to say about it. I know I'm going to learn a great deal for this class, and I love the professor. My other two classes... not so much.

My anger, frustration, and disappointment is inspired by my Shakespeare class. For starters, it is supposed to be a comprehensive drama class covering Elizabethan and Jacobean drama. This absolutely enrages me. How the fuck can you even do that? Shakespeare is such an important dramatist that his work needs to be covered as carefully and as slowly as possible. And I'm not even going to mention all the other important dramatists of the period who are being shamefully ignored. We are covering ONE Marlowe play, and two other non-Shakespeare works. AHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!

But class today absolutely enraged me. It all started off with someone giving a presentation. She used the most ridiculous, overly dramatic voice, and I wanted to either laugh or strangle her the entire time. She also pronounced about 8 million things incorrectly. Her presentation was on Elizabeth's influence of culture and society. I don't think she actually talked about either one, except for in very, very general terms. It was basically a short biography of how Elizabeth was born and became queen.
Secondly, the discussion starter (there is a different one for every class) , who is a person that I really like, brought up a discussion that was based entirely on some of the words in Midsummer Night's Dream, and didn't take society or characters into context. Only when it applied to her. Her argument was that when Theseus offers Hermia the option to be a nun, he is actually giving her an opportunity for freedom and personal agency, based on Elizabeth's role as a virgin queen. I think it's ridiculous, personally. Someone else reworded it so that it actually made sense, but she wouldn't really accept any other opinions, and didn't bother to argue her point, she just kind of kept repeating the point.
The overall discussion went nowhere, as usual. We barely talked about the text. And then I asked a question, about how a certain psychoanalytic theory applied to the text, and one of the guys in class just reiterated one of the articles we had to read. I said "Yeah, I've read that article too." And every gasped and acted shocked. It was a little rude, but it wasn't remotely personal. His rambling summary didn't have anything to do with my question, and I was already foul tempered at that point.

The Shakespeare class is redeemable for the simple fact that I get to read Shakespeare every week, and usually interesting articles. But my Intro to Drama class is a nightmare. I ranted about it last week, I believe. We waste class time going on library trips, as if we're five year olds. We read dreadfully boring, useless articles about theatre historiography, that we don't even discuss. The professor is a pompous ass who wears bow-ties, wishes to death that he was British, holds his nose up, purses his lips, and paces around the classroom. I hate the class. I keep repeating to myself, like a mantra, "It will all be over in December."

On a positive note, I found out what the seminars for next semester are going to be.
I'm very excited about Twentieth Century Chinese Theatre.
I'm less excited about my advisor's seminar, Popular Entertainment, but if he's running it, it will be good.
I'm NOT AT ALL excited about Shakespeare and Authority, by my current Shakespeare professor.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Frustration is Inevitable.

I'd like to scream, maybe just a little bit, right now. I hate feeling overwhelmed, and I don't know if I've reached that point yet, but I can see that I probably will.

I have to:
Do all my reading for next week.
Read this stupid book I'm uninterested in and write a reader's report by next Wednesday.
Start a paper and two presentations.
Make some doctors appointments.
Get Erik some birthday presents.
Cancel a bank account.
Try to figure out some sort of yoga schedule, which I've had no luck with so far.
Play piano, which I haven't done in a month.
Work on my play. As soon as I have a burst of creativity, I get too busy to do anything other than make sloppy notes.
Work on my collage. I have it started, with a lot of very excited notes, but again, no time.
Finish two books, with a long list of others behind it.
Decide on a topic (I'm kind of between two), and start researching for my masters thesis.
Try to find out about conference opportunities.
To try to find out about study abroad opportunities.
Get back into sewing, because I have a ton of things that need to be mended, and a ton of patterns I wanted to get started on.
And sooner, rather than later, I'm going to have to start shopping for winter clothes.

And go to class three times a week and work two times a week.

Of course this week is ridiculously busy. Tomorrow I have work. Wednesday I have class, and at night Erik and I are going to see Victory at Sea. Thursday I have class at the Harvard library, and then Amanda arrives. Friday I have work, and Amanda and I are going to see Neil Gaiman. Saturday we are taking Erik to an early birthday dinner, and hopefully going to see The Corpse Bride. Busy, busy, busy.

Saturday, September 17, 2005

We're Creatin Insurmountable Tension for Our Working Relationship.

My break is finally over. No, I didn't have a real break. But I spent the past two days absorbed in the five books of The Belgariad. Those have long been my comfort fantasy series, with Harry Potter in close second. But I first read The Belgariad when I was about ten, so all the characters really do feel like old friends. Sometimes I get really tired or frustrated, and I need to spend a few days vegging. Some people do it in front of the television, I do it with thousands of pages of the same old fantasy fiction.

I feel very ready to get back to work after my little break, though I'm still debating whether or not I want to read the series that comes after The Belgariad, The Mallorean. I have to say that it isn't as good, because while Eddings has the obsessive need to marry people off in the first series, he carries it to extremes in the second series. He also copies a very similar plot pattern and stretches out some ideas established in the first series. But it is the same familiar, well-loved characters. I'm also tempted to re-read Patricia McKillip's excellent Riddlemaster of Hed trilogy. I'm not even that into fantasy, I just enjoy well written, entertaining novels I can plow through in an hour. Erik is still amazed at the fact that I can read three hundred pages in a little over an hour, but I certainly can't do that with our school work. I probably won't read any more fantasy novels though, because I still have to finish Proust and de Botton, and finish the Rushdie before his talk in two weeks. And there is that stack of library books on my desk.

Now I have to shower, do the dishes, and get started on the mountain of school work that is piling up around me. I don't even have a particularly large amount of reading to do for next week, maybe 300 - 400 pages. But I really have to get a head start on all the projects and presentation due in the middle of the semester.

Friday, September 16, 2005

Words, Words, Words.

As I wrote Thursday morning, I am tired. In fact, my tiredness hasn't ceased since then.

Thursday, in short, sucked. We had a rainy, ten minute walk to the subway station. Another rainy walk to the Athenaeum, which is a beautiful and incredible old library looking out of a historic cemetery. But I was pretty miserable, because I had to sit, cold and wet, through a three hour long talk that was of no interest to me. The library was great. The librarian... not so much. The most exciting part of the "tour" was a walk through the restoration lab, where the director (?) showed us how they restore old books, maps, etc. We saw a book from the 1530's. Wow. But the talk overall was very boring, and not really of any relevance. It could have been accomplished in about half an hour. I was doubly pissed off, because I had to read all these horrible articles, and we didn't even talk about them. We had another rain-filled walk to Buddha Delight, which wasn't very good. It made me miss the good vegetarian places in Chinatown in Philly. By the time we got home I was so annoyed, tired, and tired of being cold and wet, that I spent the evening reading. I've started Eddings's The Belgariad for the millionth time. At least the fifteenth.

This morning I continued to read all afternoon, and I had my first day of work, where I also did nothing but read. I worked in the Graduate Student Lounge. They basically pay me $10 to sit there and fix the (FREE!!!) color copier, on occasion. Then I went to the library with Erik, and now I have a huge stack of titles on my desk:
Two books on religion in Shakespeare's England, because I have to give a presentation on the topic in the few weeks.
Two books for class: Diderot's The Paradox of Acting, and Dukore's Dramatic Theory and Criticism.
Brecht's Journals 1934 - 1955, because I've been wanting to read them for awhile, and because they might be useful in a presentation/paper for my Intro class.
Walter Benjamin's Understanding Brecht, which I couldn't pass up. Two of my favorite people!
Daniel Pinchbeck's Breaking Open the Head, about contemporary shamanism.
The Cambridge Guide to Asian Theatre and The Cambridge Guide to African & Caribbean Theatre.
Soooo many hopefully good books.

And while I'm on the topic of books, I have to go to the Harvard bookstore this weekend, because my order is in. Laurence Senelick's two volumes on cabaret theatre in Europe from 1890 - 1950. I also want to pick up a Salman Rushdie novel, because he is going to speak at Tufts, and this seems like a good opportunity to check him out. I particularly want to read The Satanic Verses, but all the copies were checked out of the library. I'm also reading Proust's Swann's Way, Alain de Botton's The Art of Travel, and all those Eddings's books I mentioned.

But on a film related note, I found out Mirrormask, Domino, Serenity, History of Violence, and The Corpse Bride are all coming out soon.

And now I'm going to go have cheese and crackers for dinner.

Thursday, September 15, 2005


I can't remember the last time I was this tired.

Today, in two or so hours, we have to take the subway into Boston, because my Intro to Graduate Studies class meets at the Athenaeum. I'm excited to go there, it's just such a pain in the ass. And of course Erik has to work before hand, and it's raining. So it's even more of a pain in the ass.

Oooh, now there is some lightening and thunder. That makes me want to stay inside more, but it also wakes me up a bit. I love thunder storms. And this is probably one of the last storms of the year. Though since I wrote that sentece a few minutes ago, there hasn't been anymore thunder or lightening.

I just realized it yesterday, but next Wednesday Erik and I have our one year anniversary. Since my relationship in high school, which lasted a few months more than a year, and had already gotten kind of... tiresome by the anniversary, I haven't had a relationship last more than a year. Most of them have lasted up to a year, but I've never been with someone I was so happy with. It just feels strange. I was a very different person a year ago, and I don't even feel connected with my self of two years ago.

And now I need to at least go through the motions of eating breakfast and getting dressed.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Possible Final Paper Topics for My Shakespeare Class.

1. Shakespeare's The Tempest vs Auden's The Sea and the Mirror, which is his long poem based on The Tempest. Auden is an excellent Shakespeare critic, and the edition I have of The Sea and the Mirror contains one of his critical essays on Shakespeare. The theme will probably be criticizing Shakespeare through art, and I will see how it holds up next to his article, and how it changes Shakespeare. Interesting, but potentially already written on.

2. Othello's Desdemona as a medieval/early English Christian martyr. I will compare her with other poems and narratives about medieval religious female experience, martyrdom in particular. Judith, anyone?

3. Though I haven't read it yet, everyone tells me I would love The Duchess of Malfi, so I have some ideas of doing a reading of the play (it is by Webster, not Shakespeare) as a precursor to a modern horror film. Lycanthropy, bloody revenge, and all that.

4. So far this idea is my absolute favorite. I want to do an analysis of Theatre of Blood. Yes, that's right. I said Theatre of Blood. The horror/camp film starring the most excellent Vincent Price. For those of you who don't know what this film is, here is Jeff Shannon's editorial review from Amazon.com:

"If your sense of humor is even moderately twisted, you'll savor this tasty course of well-cooked ham. Directed with delectable British wit by Douglas Hickox, the comedy is decidedly dark when Vincent Price--as effete has-been thespian Richard Lionheart--wreaks poetic justice upon the snobby critics who panned his performances and drove him to a failed attempt at suicide. Reciting his poor reviews and staging murders inspired by Shakespearean tragedies, the actor and his Dickensian coterie of accomplices (including Diane Rigg, sexy as ever) dispatch their victims with shocking ingenuity, and by the time Lionheart reenacts Titus Andronicus by gorging one dog-loving critic (the hilariously poofy Robert Morley) on toy-poodle stew, Theatre of Blood reaches giddy heights of outrageous vengeance. It's all in good fun, of course, and the film's esteemed British cast plays it to the hilt, none better than Price in one of his most entertaining roles."

So I can focus on things like Shakespeare in popular culture, Shakespeare in camp, horror, violence in Shakespeare, and SO ON. Rewrites of Shakespeare. Blah, blah, blah. Lots to say about this, and I don't think many other people have written about it!

I emailed these ideas to my professor, and I'm waiting anxiously for his response. I'm afraid the Price idea is going to be too popular culture, and not academic enough. My second favorite idea, so far, is #2, but I'm afraid that has already been written to death.

And speaking of Shakespeare...
Erik and I have a new goal. To own all 50 (or so) of the Arden editions of Will's plays. We have to get a bunch for class, of course. They are $14 a piece on the Arden site, and Amazon used books are never too reliable if you are looking for a specific edition. But today at the used bookstore down in Davis, Erik found roughly 7 of them, with some great critical books. Auden. Greenblatt. Squeeeee!!!

So hungry. Tonight we're having bowtie pasta with creamed spinach and fake chicken strips. Yum, yum, yum.

Busy bee.

Wow, I just did so much. I applied for the Oxfam internship position, donated money to their West African fund, emailed a Tufts professor about resources on contemporary African history, politics, and performance, and emailed the director of the summer program for the American Academy in Rome.

Oooh, I'm excited. Lauryn is applying to Rutgers! I love giving people academic advice.

But back to AARome. It might be stupid for me to want to go there, but I don't know if any German universities have summer programs. I don't think there is an American Academy in Berlin, for example. But my main motivation in going there is that I am really interested in Catholic mysticism in performance, particularly in regards to Medieval performance and poetry. This is potentially problematic, but I don't understand why I can't follow an interest. Basically scholars just don't go from medieval studies to modern/contemporary. But there is another reason to go there. After I write the Icarus play, which I need to get moving on, and hopefully will finish by... February? I plan to write a play inspired by mysticism and sainthood, particularly regarding it's effect on the physical body, etc. Going to fucking ROME to research that would be beyond amazing, and inspiring to boot.

Activism, Activism, Rah, Rah, Rah!

This undoubtedly is cheesy, but seeing a film like The Constant Gardener really makes me want to get involved. In some way, however small. I love being a graduate student, and I look forward to writing articles, going to conferences, getting involved with performances, etc. One could argue that I will be providing cultural and educational aid, but there are a lot of people who need more basic, important things that theatre. You know, like food, medicine, and rights. I think I'm going to apply for a communications intern position with Oxfam. One of their main offices is in downtown Boston. I probably won't get it, but at least I'm going to try. I mean, I'm pretty qualified. I've made my own webpage, copyediting isn't difficult, I have experience with French, internet research tools, and photography.

If anyone reading my blog is interested in this sort of thing, please check out:

I really hope they have multiple internship positions open and I get accepted.

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Shakespeare - Othello - Act Five

Scene One
Iago and Roderigo
Iago hides Roderigo behind a pillar to kill Cassio. Roderigo says to himself that he doesn't really want to kill Cassio, but that Iago has given him good reasons. Iago says to himself that he wants Roderigo out of the way, because he is asking about gold and jewels Iago was supposed to give to Desdemona, but kept for himself.
Cassio enters. Roderigo tries to kill him, but Cassio wounds Roderigo, killing him. Iago wounds Cassio in the leg from behind.
Othello hears Cassio's voice and knows Iago has kept his word. Othello thinks they have killed each other.
"Minion, your dear lies dead,
And your unblest fate hies: strumpet, I come.
Forth of my heart those charms, thine eyes, are blotted;
Thy bed, lust-stain'd, shall with lust's blood be spotted."
He exits.
Enter Lodovico and Gratiano. They hear cries and are nervous to enter without more help, but Iago enters with a light. They discover Cassio, injured. Iago finds Roderigo and stabs him when Cassio says he is one of the villains.
Bianca enters, and Iago echoes her. She cries for Cassio and Iago calls her a strumpet. Iago asks Cassio if he knows who wounded him and he does not. Gratiano recognizes Roderigo. Iago greets Gratiano like a friend, but he is obviously not upper class. Iago acts the hero and tries to help everyone. Bianca enters and Iago tries to blame it on a fight over a whore.

Scene Two
Enter Othello with a light, Desdemona sleeping in her bed.

"It is the cause, it is the cause, my soul,--
Let me not name it to you, you chaste stars!--
It is the cause. Yet I'll not shed her blood;
Nor scar that whiter skin of hers than snow,
And smooth as monumental alabaster.
Yet she must die, else she'll betray more men.
Put out the light, and then put out the light:
If I quench thee, thou flaming minister,
I can again thy former light restore,
Should I repent me: but once put out thy light,
Thou cunning'st pattern of excelling nature,
I know not where is that Promethean heat
That can thy light relume. When I have pluck'd the rose,
I cannot give it vital growth again.
It must needs wither: I'll smell it on the tree.

Kissing her
Ah balmy breath, that dost almost persuade
Justice to break her sword! One more, one more.
Be thus when thou art dead, and I will kill thee,
And love thee after. One more, and this the last:
So sweet was ne'er so fatal. I must weep,
But they are cruel tears: this sorrow's heavenly;
It strikes where it doth love. She wakes."
He asks her if she has prayed and asked forgiveness for any crime. He says he does not want to kill her soul.

Othello - Think on thy sins.
DESDEMONA - They are loves I bear to you.
OTHELLO - Ay, and for that thou diest.
He asks her again about the handkerchief. She says she did not give it to Cassio.
"Yes, presently:
Therefore confess thee freely of thy sin;
For to deny each article with oath
Cannot remove nor choke the strong conception
That I do groan withal. Thou art to die."
"And makest me call what I intend to do
A murder, which I thought a sacrifice:
I saw the handkerchief."
He kills her without letting her explain her innocence anymore.
Enilia enters and he thinks she is going to tell him about Cassio's death.
Emilia notices Desdemona dying and she says that she dies a guitless death and that no one killed her but herself, and to commend her to her lord. Othello says that proves she's a liar, b/c he killed her.
He tells her Iago told him that she was having an affair with Cassio. Emilia is shocked, and begins to suspect.
Montano, Gratiano, and Iago enter.
Emilia confronts him, and he says what he said was true. Iago tries to shut her up or send her home, but she is determined to speak when she realizes that the proof was in the handkerchief. Iago tries to stab her. Emilia tells Othello the truth, and Iago stabs her. Othello runs at Iago and he flees. Montano exits to find Iago and Gratiano stays to guard Othello or kill him if he tries to escape. He speaks to Emilia one last time and then speaks with Gratiano.

"Behold, I have a weapon;
A better never did itself sustain
Upon a soldier's thigh: I have seen the day,
That, with this little arm and this good sword,
I have made my way through more impediments
Than twenty times your stop: but, O vain boast!
Who can control his fate? 'tis not so now.
Be not afraid, though you do see me weapon'd;
Here is my journey's end, here is my butt,
And very sea-mark of my utmost sail.
Do you go back dismay'd? 'tis a lost fear;
Man but a rush against Othello's breast,
And he retires. Where should Othello go?
Now, how dost thou look now? O ill-starr'd wench!
Pale as thy smock! when we shall meet at compt,
This look of thine will hurl my soul from heaven,
And fiends will snatch at it. Cold, cold, my girl!
Even like thy chastity. O cursed slave!
Whip me, ye devils,
From the possession of this heavenly sight!
Blow me about in winds! roast me in sulphur!
Wash me in steep-down gulfs of liquid fire!
O Desdemona! Desdemona! dead!
Oh! Oh! Oh!"

Enter Lodovico, Montano, Iago, and Cassio
Othello stabs Iago, but does not kill him.
LODOVICO - O thou Othello, thou wert once so good,
Fall'n in the practise of a damned slave,
What shall be said to thee?
OTHELLO - Why, any thing:
An honourable murderer, if you will;
For nought I did in hate, but all in honour.
They find letters as evidence against Iago's treachery
"O fool, fool, fool"

They tell him he is stripped of his command and that it goes to Cassio.

Soft you; a word or two before you go.
I have done the state some service, and they know't.
No more of that. I pray you, in your letters,
When you shall these unlucky deeds relate,
Speak of me as I am; nothing extenuate,
Nor set down aught in malice: then must you speak
Of one that loved not wisely but too well;
Of one not easily jealous, but being wrought
Perplex'd in the extreme; of one whose hand,
Like the base Indian, threw a pearl away
Richer than all his tribe; of one whose subdued eyes,
Albeit unused to the melting mood,
Drop tears as fast as the Arabian trees
Their medicinal gum. Set you down this;
And say besides, that in Aleppo once,
Where a malignant and a turban'd Turk
Beat a Venetian and traduced the state,
I took by the throat the circumcised dog,
And smote him, thus.

Stabs himself

"I kiss'd thee ere I kill'd thee: no way but this;
Killing myself, to die upon a kiss.

Falls on the bed, and dies"

"Myself will straight aboard: and to the state
This heavy act with heavy heart relate."

Shakespeare - Othello - Act Four

Act Four

Scene One
Othello and Iago enter, and Iago puts the thoughts into his mind about kissing and lying naked in bed. Iago works him int a fit by telling him that Cassio said they had sex:
"Lie with her! lie on her! We say lie on her, when
they belie her. Lie with her! that's fulsome.
confess, and be hanged for his labour;--first, to be
hanged, and then to confess.--I tremble at it.
Nature would not invest herself in such shadowing
passion without some instruction. It is not words
that shake me thus. Pish! Noses, ears, and lips.
--Is't possible?--Confess--handkerchief!--O devil!--
Falls in a trance"
Cassio enters, and tries to help. Iago tells him to go and that he must speak with him about something later on.
Othello awakens.
"A horned man's a monster and a beast."
He asks if Cassio confessed it. Iago tells Othello to hide himself, and he will get him to confess the whole thing, he says he will make Cassio tell him of Bianca, who loves him, but who Cassio thinks is ridiculous. Cassio and Iago laugh back and forth about how Bianca thinks he is going to marry her. Othello becomes enraged. Bianca enters, giving Cassio the handkerchief. Bianca calls Cassio away to sup. Iago tells Cassio he must speak to him again, and exits.

A lot of people talk about when they will eat, making plans to eat together, etc. Also a lot of repetition, particularly during times of hysteria.

Othello tells Iago about how he will murder Desdemona
"Ay, let her rot, and perish, and be damned to-night;
for she shall not live: no, my heart is turned to
stone; I strike it, and it hurts my hand. O, the
world hath not a sweeter creature: she might lie by
an emperor's side and command him tasks."

"Hang her! I do but say what she is: so delicate
with her needle: an admirable musician: O! she
will sing the savageness out of a bear: of so high
and plenteous wit and invention:--"

Iago tells him not too kill Desdemona, that she is worse for this. But he gives him advice
"Do it not with poison, strangle her in her bed, even
the bed she hath contaminated."
Iago says he will kill Cassio by midnight. A trumpet is sounded, Lodovico and Desdemona enter. Lodovico gives Othello a letter from the duke, which he reads. She tells her cousin of the problem between Othello and Cassio. Othello misunderstands what Desdemona is saying about being glad to go home to Venice. He strikes her. He says he will go back to Venice and they will sup together that night, only saying bad things about Desdemona.
"Goats and monkeys!"

Scene Two
Othello and Emilia speak, and she says she has seen or heard absolutely nothing suspicious. Emilia goes to fetch Desdemona. Othello mentions "and yet she'll kneel and pray" - he doesn't quite believe the maid. Desdemona enters and Othello asks to see her eyes, and asks Emilia to stand watch.
"Upon my knees, what doth your speech import?
I understand a fury in your words.
But not the words."
She says she is his loyal wife, and he asks her to swear and damn herself. He says she is false and she clearly doesn't understand.
"O Desdemona! away! away! away!"

"Had it pleased heaven
To try me with affliction; had they rain'd
All kinds of sores and shames on my bare head.
Steep'd me in poverty to the very lips,
Given to captivity me and my utmost hopes,
I should have found in some place of my soul
A drop of patience: but, alas, to make me
A fixed figure for the time of scorn
To point his slow unmoving finger at!
Yet could I bear that too; well, very well:
But there, where I have garner'd up my heart,
Where either I must live, or bear no life;
The fountain from the which my current runs,
Or else dries up; to be discarded thence!
Or keep it as a cistern for foul toads
To knot and gender in! Turn thy complexion there,
Patience, thou young and rose-lipp'd cherubin,--
Ay, there, look grim as hell!"

She asks if he thinks her honest, and when she answers in the negative, she asks what she has done wrong. He more or less calls her a whore, and she tells him he does her wrong. He becomes more hysterical and tells Emilia to keep their counsel and gives her money.
Othello exits, and she despairs to Emilia. She tells Emilia to lay the wedding sheets on the bed and call her husband to her. Iago enters and asks her what's wrong. She makes Emilia tell him Othello has called her a whore.
"I will be hang'd, if some eternal villain,
Some busy and insinuating rogue,
Some cogging, cozening slave, to get some office,
Have not devised this slander; I'll be hang'd else."
She guesses exactly what is going on, but does not realize it's Iago. Desdemona kneels and asks Iago what she can do to win him back. Trumpets are sounded and she is called out.
Enter Roderigo.
He accuses Iago of lying to him and ignoring him. But Iago tells him to have patience, and that he should kill Cassio. Cassio is going to get Othello's position there and go away with Desdemona, so Roderigo should kill him.

Scene Three
Othello, Lodovico, Desdemona, Emilia
Othello sends Desdemona off to bed and says he will be there soon. he tells her to dismiss her attendant.
"He says he will return incontinent:
He hath commanded me to go to bed,
And bade me to dismiss you."
She tells Emilia that if she dies, to shroud her in one of her wedding sheets.
"My mother had a maid call'd Barbara:
She was in love, and he she loved proved mad
And did forsake her: she had a song of 'willow;'
An old thing 'twas, but it express'd her fortune,
And she died singing it: that song to-night
Will not go from my mind; I have much to do,
But to go hang my head all at one side,
And sing it like poor Barbara. Prithee, dispatch."
Emilia tries to distract her with talk of how handsome Lodovico is, but Desdemona sings the Willow Song. They have a very complicated discussion about what kind of woman would cuckold her husband and why.
"Good night, good night: heaven me such uses send,
Not to pick bad from bad, but by bad mend!"

Shakespeare - Othello - Act Three

Act Three

Scene One
Enter Cassio and Musicians and Clown
Play within a play

Clown taunts the musicians that their instruments are too nasal - clown makes the joke that he knows many tales/penises that hang near wind instruments (ass?). He tells the musicians that Othello does not want to hear anymore music, so they pack up and leave. Cassio asks the Clown to get Emilia.
Enter Iago. He offers to get Emilia and to distract Othello, so that Cassio can talk to Desdemona freely about his problem.
"I never know a Florentine more kind and honest."
Enter Emilia. She says Desdemona and Othello are speaking about his problem, and that the man he hurt is of great fame in Cyprus, so it is not a light matter. She takes him in to speak to Desdemona.

Scene Two
Enter Iago, Othello, and Gentlemen
glimpse of Othello at work undistracted by Desdemona. What is the point of this scene other than that? He asks Iago to delivers letters and tells them to meet him on the fortification works

Scene Three
Enter Desdemona, Cassio, and Emilia
Desdemona assures him she will do all that she can, and that everything will be fine. She says she will talk to Othello about it constantly, until he agrees - she doesn't know it, but she is putting her marriage at risk.
Othello and Iago enter, and Cassio leaves.
"Ha, I lke not that." Iago plants a seed of doubt in Othello's head. "I cannot think it that he would steal away so guilty-like seeing you coming." Desdemona says she was talking with him, and asks Othello to call him back, but he says "Not now." She hounds him, asking him to name a time, gives a speech, where she says that Cassio came with Othello when he was wooing Desdemona to speak his part.
"Prithee, no more. Let him come when he will, I will deny thee nothing." She persists again. "Leave me but a little too myself."
She is a little rude and says "Be as your fancies teach you: Whate'er you be, I am obedient." Implying that he is a bad husband.
She and Emilia exit.
"Excellent wretch! Perdition catch my soul,
But I do love thee! and when I love thee not,
Chaos is come again."
Iago begins to plant doubt in his head that Cassio and Desdemona are having an affair, perhaps from the very beginning.
"Think, my lord!
By heaven, he echoes me,
As if there were some monster in his thought
Too hideous to be shown. Thou dost mean something:
I heard thee say even now, thou likedst not that,
When Cassio left my wife: what didst not like?
And when I told thee he was of my counsel
In my whole course of wooing, thou criedst 'Indeed!'
And didst contract and purse thy brow together,
As if thou then hadst shut up in thy brain
Some horrible conceit: if thou dost love me,
Show me thy thought."
Iago echoes again, like a hypnotist. Othello says that he is moved by Iago's thoughts, because he knows Iago to be honest and think before he speaks about something.
"O, beware, my lord, of jealousy;
It is the green-eyed monster which doth mock
The meat it feeds on; that cuckold lives in bliss
Who, certain of his fate, loves not his wronger;
But, O, what damned minutes tells he o'er
Who dotes, yet doubts, suspects, yet strongly loves!"
Othello is still rational and says he will not suspect his wife without proof.
"Look to your wife; observe her well with Cassio;
Wear your eye thus, not jealous nor secure:
I would not have your free and noble nature,
Out of self-bounty, be abused; look to't:
I know our country disposition well;
In Venice they do let heaven see the pranks
They dare not show their husbands; their best conscience
Is not to leave't undone, but keep't unknown."
Iago here begins to keep goading Othello "My lord, I see you're moved." Another thing he repeats.
Othello begins to doubt:
"And yet, how nature erring from itself,--"
"Ay, there's the point: as--to be bold with you--
Not to affect many proposed matches
Of her own clime, complexion, and degree,
Whereto we see in all things nature tends--
Foh! one may smell in such a will most rank,
Foul disproportion thoughts unnatural.
But pardon me; I do not in position
Distinctly speak of her; though I may fear
Her will, recoiling to her better judgment,
May fall to match you with her country forms
And happily repent."
Othello dismisses him, tells him to have his wife watch Desdemona, and thinks about it himself.
Othello thinks Iago has "seen" more. Obsession with seeing.
Iago returns and tells him to keep mind of Desdemona "straining" too much to have Cassio returned to his position, which Iago knows she is going to do.

This fellow's of exceeding honesty,
And knows all qualities, with a learned spirit,
Of human dealings. If I do prove her haggard,
Though that her jesses were my dear heartstrings,
I'ld whistle her off and let her down the wind,
To pray at fortune. Haply, for I am black
And have not those soft parts of conversation
That chamberers have, or for I am declined
Into the vale of years,--yet that's not much--
She's gone. I am abused; and my relief
Must be to loathe her. O curse of marriage,
That we can call these delicate creatures ours,
And not their appetites! I had rather be a toad,
And live upon the vapour of a dungeon,
Than keep a corner in the thing I love
For others' uses. Yet, 'tis the plague of great ones;
Prerogatived are they less than the base;
'Tis destiny unshunnable, like death:
Even then this forked plague is fated to us
When we do quicken. Desdemona comes:
If she be false, O, then heaven mocks itself!
I'll not believe't.

he is the hunter and she is the hawk. we now know he is beginning to become so suspicious of her that his love here begins to fade.
He says he is unwell and she tries to put her handkerchief to his head. She drops it, and they go off to dinner. Emilia picks it up, and mentions that it is very dear to Desdemona, b/c it is the first love token from Othello. She also says that Iago has asked her to steal it a hundred times. She says that Desdemona keeps it "to kiss and to talk to" like a child with it's blanket. She says she will copy the work and give it to him.
"I nothing, but to please his fancy" - shows that they don't get along well.
He won't tell her what he will do with it, but is very excited. He gives another speech about his plans - he will leave it in Cassio's room and let Othello find it.

"Trifles light as air
Are to the jealous confirmations strong
As proofs of holy writ: this may do something.
The Moor already changes with my poison:
Dangerous conceits are, in their natures, poisons.
Which at the first are scarce found to distaste,
But with a little act upon the blood.
Burn like the mines of Sulphur. I did say so:
Look, where he comes!

Re-enter OTHELLO
Not poppy, nor mandragora,
Nor all the drowsy syrups of the world,
Shall ever medicine thee to that sweet sleep
Which thou owedst yesterday."

Othello returns and is obsessing about it, and he is completely transformed.

"I had been happy, if the general camp,
Pioners and all, had tasted her sweet body,
So I had nothing known. O, now, for ever
Farewell the tranquil mind! farewell content!
Farewell the plumed troop, and the big wars,
That make ambition virtue! O, farewell!
Farewell the neighing steed, and the shrill trump,
The spirit-stirring drum, the ear-piercing fife,
The royal banner, and all quality,
Pride, pomp and circumstance of glorious war!
And, O you mortal engines, whose rude throats
The immortal Jove's dead clamours counterfeit,
Farewell! Othello's occupation's gone!"

Now that he knows, he cannot think about anything else.

"Villain, be sure thou prove my love a whore,
Be sure of it; give me the ocular proof:
Or by the worth of man's eternal soul,
Thou hadst been better have been born a dog
Than answer my waked wrath!"

"Make me to see't; or, at the least, so prove it,
That the probation bear no hinge nor loop
To hang a doubt on; or woe upon thy life!"

He is obsessed with seeing proof. And if exactly where Iago wants him.

"Are you a man? have you a soul or sense?"
He becomes enraged with Iago, and though he does not realize it, guesses the entire scheme. But Iago's pretend honesty makes him a friend again.

"I'll have some proof. Her name, that was as fresh
As Dian's visage, is now begrimed and black
As mine own face. If there be cords, or knives,
Poison, or fire, or suffocating streams,
I'll not endure it. Would I were satisfied!"

"Would you, the supervisor, grossly gape on--
Behold her topp'd?"

gives him visual images of Desdemona having sex with someone else.
Iago then tells that he slept with Cassio, who had a dream that he was with Desdemona and acted out part of the dream in his sleep.
"I'll tear her all to pieces." - Does he stop loving her here?
Iago mentions the handkerchief and says he saw Cassio wiping his beard with it.
"Now do I see 'tis true. Look here, Iago;
All my fond love thus do I blow to heaven.
'Tis gone.
Arise, black vengeance, from thy hollow cell!
Yield up, O love, thy crown and hearted throne
To tyrannous hate! Swell, bosom, with thy fraught,
For 'tis of aspics' tongues!"
"O, blood, blood, blood!" - repetition
He kneels.

Never, Iago: Like to the Pontic sea,
Whose icy current and compulsive course
Ne'er feels retiring ebb, but keeps due on
To the Propontic and the Hellespont,
Even so my bloody thoughts, with violent pace,
Shall ne'er look back, ne'er ebb to humble love,
Till that a capable and wide revenge
Swallow them up. Now, by yond marble heaven,
In the due reverence of a sacred vow
I here engage my words.

Iago kneels with him.
He makes a ceremonial speech and they rise together. Othello thanks him for this verbal bonding, and says that he wants Iago to kill Cassio within three days.
Iago says to let Desdemona live.
At the end of the scene they are bound together "I am your own for ever." - Iago

Scene Four
Desdemona, Emilia, and Clown
Desdemona asks clown where Cassio is, but it is briefly muddled with riddles. She tells him to find Cassio and tell him she interceded on his behalf. The clown exits. Desdemona misses her handkerchief, and says even that Othello not jealous, he will be put to "ill-thinking."
Othello enters. She says she will not leave him until he agrees to call Cassio to him. He takes her hand:
"This argues fruitfulness and liberal heart:
Hot, hot, and moist: this hand of yours requires
A sequester from liberty, fasting and prayer,
Much castigation, exercise devout;
For here's a young and sweating devil here,
That commonly rebels. 'Tis a good hand,
A frank one."
"A liberal hand: the hearts of old gave hands;
But our new heraldry is hands, not hearts."
Othello says they are now joined in hands - marriage - but not by hearts - he no longer loves her.
He asks for the handkerchief. She does not have it, so he tells her a magical story about it.
"my father's eye" - "make it a darling, like your precious eye"
They get into a fight and he demands the handkerchief, she demands that he see Cassio. He exists, cursing.
Emilia - "'Tis not a year or two shows us a man:
They are all but stomachs, and we all but food;
To eat us hungerly, and when they are full,
They belch us."

Cassio and Iago enter.
Iago is telling him he must entreat Othello through Desdemona. Cassio asks her, and she says that she can do nothing, because Othello is not himself. Iago asks if he is angry and goes after him. Desdemona says she is sure something business oriented bothers Othello. She and Emilia hope it is not "the monster" jealousy that has entered into his mind. They exit to go entreat him again.
Bianca enters. Cassio says he was just heading to her house, and she says she was heading to his. She has precisely counted the time that he has been away, she is in love with him? Cassio gives her Desdemona's handkerchief and asks her to copy the work. She becomes jealous and Cassio tells her he doesn't know where it came from. He tells her he will see her soon, because he is waiting for the general, and does not wish to have Othello see him with a woman.

Work Out Your Own Salvation with Fear and Trembling - Philippians 2:12

I was in such a deep sleep this morning that I barely managed to pry myself out of bed. And damn was it chilly in here. Though according to weather.com, the next few days are supposed to be really hot. I don't want it to be 90 out, but I'm glad the heat isn't completely gone yet. After all, it's only the beginning of September.

Saturday was a jolly good day.

I had a huge, yummy breakfast, and then worked on my paper for awhile. I still have two and half pages left at the time of writing this, but I have plenty of time today to finish it and still get a lot of other things finished. I had lunch instead of going to yoga. Then Erik and I went to see The Exorcism of Emily Rose. I cannot stress how much I love movies influenced by Catholic mythology. And this one was no exception. Ebert gave it a 3/5, and I’m going to have to agree with him. While I was entertained, filled with suspense, etc, there were parts of the filming and dialogue that were very amateurish. But it did give me an idea for Play #2. I’d probably buy it on DVD. Hell, I bought Stigmata, and this is definitely better than that. And I have to find out if this really is a true story, as the film claimed. For some reason I would get a lot of pleasure out of it being complete fiction, with the film-makers fabricating the heart-felt notes before the credits.

When I came home my new Jade & Pearl “Sea Pearls” were in the mail. Huzzah for natural tampons. Well, they are sponges, not tampons. I’m a little nervous about using them, but I have a whole month to get used to the idea. They also gave me a nice lunar calendar that I hung on the back of the bathroom door, much to Erik’s dismay. After that I cut my hair. I know, I cut it about a week or so ago, but I really love cutting my hair. I chopped it all off in the back, but didn’t touch the front. So now it’s even more a-line, and it will perpetually be all messy. This Naturcolor dye is also holding up pretty well. Not as vibrant/dark as it was on Wednesday, but it hasn’t faded nearly as much as the Hydrience.

For dinner we made Amy’s vegetarian chili with vegetables. It was very good for canned chili, and I would definitely buy it again. A lot of canned soups really need to be spiced up, so to speak, but this didn’t at all. We added popcorn rice, cheese, diced orange pepper, and a little too much cayenne. After some more work, we watched Quiz Show. I was entertained, and the acting was good, but for some reason I wasn't really that impressed by the overall plot. I love historical drama, Ralph Fiennes, and John Torturo, so it was a good enough Saturday night movie for me.

There won't be much to write about today, because I have to finish my paper, go to yoga in an hour, and do a lot of reading. Hopefully I'll get some time to practice piano, work on my play, and my collage.

Friday, September 09, 2005

Shakespeare - Othello - Act Two

Scene One
On Cyprus - Enter Montant and two Gentlemen
A tempest/flood is visible, so that they can discern no news from the shore. The tempest and Othello's ship have defeated the Turks. Othello has been lost at sea, and Cassio is on shore looking for him. Cassio tells of Desdemona and how wonderful she is. Is he in love with her?
"Make love's quick pants in Desdemona's arms."
Desdemona, Iago, Roderigo, and Emilia.
"You men of Cyprus, let her have your knees! Hail to thee, lady, and the grace of heaven"
Cassio kisses Emilia, and Iago both says Emilia is quick to kiss Cassio and quick to scold Iago, talking down about her as soon as he opens his mouth. Desdemona defends her, then Iago says that she talks to much, even probably to Desdemona.
"Come on, come on; you are pictures out of doors,
Bells in your parlors, wild-cats in your kitchens,
Saints m your injuries, devils being offended,
Players in your housewifery, and housewives' in your beds."
Iago includes Desdemona in this offensive and anti-woman remark.
"You rise to play and go to bed to work." Attack's Desdemona's sense of sexual privacy.
Desdemona then tries to stop their bickering and place herself in the line of fire. They banter back and forth and "black and white" suggests the mixed union of Othello and Desdemona. Desdemona recognizes that Iago is sidestepping, thinking he is more clever than she is. Iago starts speaking more and more sexually, though he plays the fool to show off his cleverness.
"There's none so foul and foolish thereunto,
But does foul pranks which fair and wise ones do."
Iago speaks privately to himself - he has realized that Desdemona is Cassio's weakness, and that he is in love with her. The imagery of his speech - fingers, lips, pipes - is partly sexual.
Othello enters and he and Desdemona great eachother.
"If after every tempest come such calms,
May the winds blow till they have waken'd death!
And let the labouring bark climb hills of seas
Olympus-high and duck again as low
As hell's from heaven! If it were now to die,
'Twere now to be most happy; for, I fear,
My soul hath her content so absolute
That not another comfort like to this
Succeeds in unknown fate."
"It stops me here" refers to his later choking.
Does Othello barely greet Iago here?
Iago tells Roderigo to meet with him at the harbour, then he tells him that Desdemona is in love with Cassio. "Her eye must be fed." Aside from this, Iago says she desires someone more similar to her, when his "fantastical lies" have worn off. Going along with the theme of appetite, Iago says Othello will make her vomit and abhor him.
Describes Iago better than Cassio -
"a knave very voluble; no further conscionable than in putting on the mere form of civil and humane seeming, for the better compassing of his salt and most hidden loose affection?"
Iago translates Cassio and Desdemona's hand touching as sexual behavior. Iago has a way of retelling something so that he makes the memory change in someone else's mind -
"Lechery, by this hand; an index and obscure prologue to the history of lust and foul thoughts. They met
so near with their lips that their breaths embraced together."
Iago tells Roderigo to go near Cassio at his nightly watch and to instigate him in some way. His plan begins to come together when he realizes Cassio loves Desdemona and she has good cause to love him. Iago gives a third motive for his hatred of Othello, saying that he loves Desdemona as well, but it is more about Othello have sex with his wife, so he wants to be even.

"The Moor, howbeit that I endure him not, Is of a constant, loving, noble nature, And I dare think he'll prove to Desdemona A most dear husband."

"For that I do suspect the lusty Moor Hath leap'd into my seat; the thought whereof Doth, like a poisonous mineral, gnaw my inwards; And nothing can or shall content my soul Till I am even'd with him, wife for wife, Or failing so, yet that I put the Moor At least into a jealousy so strong That judgment cannot cure."

Scene Two
Othello's Herald enters with a Proclimation
He says that everyone is commanded to party, because Othello has defeated the Turks, and because he is celebrating his wedding. Implies that the marriage has not been consummated yet?

Scene Three
Othello, Cassio, and Desdemona
Othello tells Cassio to keep guard, and that he knows what to do.
"the fruits are to ensue" - the marriage still has to be consummated.
They exit. Iago enters, and he and Cassio speak about Desdemona. Iago's speech is sexual. "he hath not yet made wanton the night with her; and she is sport for Jove." "And, I'll warrant her, fun of game." "What an eye she has! methinks it sounds a parley of provocation." "And when she speaks, is it not an alarum to love?" Cassio speaks about her, but keeps his view of her as modest. Metaphor of love and war presented by Iago. Iago tries to convince Cassio to drink, knowing that he has a poor tolerance, so that he becomes very aggressive, so that he will harm Roderigo. Some gentlemen enter, incl. Montano, and they all begin drinking. Iago sings and jokes. Cassiosays " I hope to be saved." He mentions the lieutenant must be saved before the ancient - class remark? Iago implies to Montano that Cassio is drunk often and that it is his vice. He sends Roderigo after Cassio. Iago convinces Montano that he loves Cassio, but that he is a sad case. Cassio then enters, chasing and beating Roderigo. Iago has Roderigo call an alarm, and Cassio and Montano fight, Montano is wounded. Othello enters with attendants. Iago acts like a benevolent mediator. Othello rationally (and mostly calmly) asks them to hold, as they are Christian and not heathens, and asks Iago to explain what happened.
"I do not know: friends all but now, even now,
In quarter, and in terms like bride and groom
Devesting them for bed; and then, but now--
As if some planet had unwitted men--
Swords out, and tilting one at other's breast,
In opposition bloody. I cannot speak
Any beginning to this peevish odds;
And would in action glorious I had lost
Those legs that brought me to a part of it!"
Cassio says he cannot speak, and Montano also says he wishes Iago to tell what happened and how he was offended.
"Now, by heaven,
My blood begins my safer guides to rule;
And passion, having my best judgment collied,
Assays to lead the way: if I once stir,
Or do but lift this arm, the best of you
Shall sink in my rebuke. Give me to know
How this foul rout began, who set it on;
And he that is approved in this offence,
Though he had twinn'd with me, both at a birth,
Shall lose me. What! in a town of war,
Yet wild, the people's hearts brimful of fear,
To manage private and domestic quarrel,
In night, and on the court and guard of safety!
'Tis monstrous. Iago, who began't?"
Othello is beginning to lose his rationality. Montano warns Iago to tell the truth. Iago says he doesn't know what happened, that Cassio came in attacking someone, Montano tried to intervene, and Iago tried to chase down the man, but he got away.
"Cassio, I love thee
But never more be officer of mine."
Desdemona enters after being awakened, to find out what happened. Othello leads her off and commands than Iago quiet everyone, and that Montano be lead off to be healed.

Cassio -
"Reputation, reputation, reputation! O, I have lost
my reputation! I have lost the immortal part of
myself, and what remains is bestial. My reputation,
Iago, my reputation!"
This is the third (I think) time such repetition is used. First by Iago, then by Roderigo. Iago tells him that reputation is gotten without merit (which he blames Cassio for) and lost without deserving (which he has done to Cassio), and that he is just in Othello's bad graces and things can be put right. Cassio says he does not remember why the quarrel even happened, or who the man was.
"I remember a mass of things, but nothing distinctly;
a quarrel, but nothing wherefore. O God, that men
should put an enemy in their mouths to steal away
their brains! that we should, with joy, pleasance
revel and applause, transform ourselves into beasts!"
Iago tells him to fix things, and gives him (damning) advice.
"I'll tell you what you shall do. Our general's wife
is now the general: may say so in this respect, for
that he hath devoted and given up himself to the
contemplation, mark, and denotement of her parts and
graces: confess yourself freely to her; importune
her help to put you in your place again: she is of
so free, so kind, so apt, so blessed a disposition,
she holds it a vice in her goodness not to do more
than she is requested: this broken joint between
you and her husband entreat her to splinter; and, my
fortunes against any lay worth naming, this
crack of your love shall grow stronger than it was before."

Iago's monologue -
"And what's he then that says I play the villain?
When this advice is free I give and honest,
Probal to thinking and indeed the course
To win the Moor again? For 'tis most easy
The inclining Desdemona to subdue
In any honest suit: she's framed as fruitful
As the free elements. And then for her
To win the Moor--were't to renounce his baptism,
All seals and symbols of redeemed sin,
His soul is so enfetter'd to her love,
That she may make, unmake, do what she list,
Even as her appetite shall play the god
With his weak function. How am I then a villain
To counsel Cassio to this parallel course,
Directly to his good? Divinity of hell!
When devils will the blackest sins put on,
They do suggest at first with heavenly shows,
As I do now: for whiles this honest fool
Plies Desdemona to repair his fortunes
And she for him pleads strongly to the Moor,
I'll pour this pestilence into his ear,
That she repeals him for her body's lust;
And by how much she strives to do him good,
She shall undo her credit with the Moor.
So will I turn her virtue into pitch,
And out of her own goodness make the net
That shall enmesh them all."
Roderigo enters and says he is running out of money and must soon return to Venice empty handed. Iago tells him to be patience, and that he has already won a victory.

"Two things are to be done:
My wife must move for Cassio to her mistress;
I'll set her on;
Myself the while to draw the Moor apart,
And bring him jump when he may Cassio find
Soliciting his wife: ay, that's the way
Dull not device by coldness and delay."

Money is a Kind of Poetry.

One thing I like about getting up early (this morning I woke up at 8am) is that I have time to relax and take it slow in the morning, and still feel like the whole day is ahead of me. Erik just left for work, and I've already showered, dressed, and had breakfast, so that's how I feel right now. I have a colossal amount of reading to do (already), and a lot of assignments I'd like to get a start on. Plus a long list of errands I should have completed a week ago, and a paper for a summer class that I swore to myself I will hand in on Monday.

I still have to figure out how to post pictures, and I'd like to somehow be able to edit the html, so that I can have a separate section for my academic posts, and a separate section for art-related things. I'd like to take pictures of my collage in progress. I don't know if it's possible to do all that with a free blog, but I guess I'll give it a try when I have the time.

Wow, my grandparents just sent me a set of non-stick pots and pans, complete with a small set of tools. We currently have two sets of pots and pans. One set is pretty nice, but they have horrible lids, where food and other gross things gets trapped inside and it's a pain in the ass to take them apart and clean them. The other set is just really crappy. Now hopefully we can throw away some of the crappy pans.

I made a list of some of the artistic/theatre things I want to do over the next few years.
I want to...

write a play about Icarus and have it produced.

direct Macbeth.

direct Medea.

go to conferences and present papers.

go to Berlin for a few months to live and research.

complete my painting/collage.


On days like today I'm really glad to go to yoga. I spent a nice day at home, all alone, doing some reading. The second Erik comes home, he's grumpy. There is too much trash and there are too many dishes. Granted, I never do the dishes... so I'm also at fault. And simultaneously people start IMing me about things I don't care about. Now I remember why I deleted AIM in the first place. I don't care about gossip. People are always (well, not as much, since I abandoned AIM, most of my acquaintences, and the phone) telling me stories about who cheated on who, or their sexcapades. I think it's really, really trashy to talk about stuff like that ALL the time. And it makes me angry that one second I can read about this MA Buddhist retreat I'm thinking about going to, and another there are people IMing me stupid gossip. I'm fairly certain someone is going to get pissed off about me writing this, but the reason I got a new blog is so that I can post whatever I want and not care. I was always pretty careful with livejournal, because a lot of my friends read it. But honestly, if they really are my friends, then I can post how I feel in my own journal, and they'll get over it. I don't even have friends anymore, but that's something I want to post about later, when I have a lot of time. And maybe I'll just be completely honest, naming names and saying things I never would have said previously, because I cared too much about the person's feelings. But now I have to go asana my butt off. I'm actually a little nervous, because it will be my first day in intermediate yoga.

I feel the need to edit this for several reasons. I don't want to take out anything I wrote, because I meant it when I wrote it, and I think it's a good lesson to me to realize I can be as petty, hurtful, and spiteful as anyone else. And my purpose in this blog is not to talk trash about my friends, or hurt anyone's feelings. But if I'm unhappy about something, I want to be able to write about it freely without it causing a lot of drama, which would inevitably happen in my other journal. So while it was rude of me to say that it's trashy to talk about sex and gossip all the time (I know I've done it before), I guess what I really should have said is that it seems like I have a few friends who still gossip, etc. all the time about things or people I am uninterested in. The real problem is not that so-and-so tells me details of their sex life, it's just that I'm completely uninterested in the conversation. Ultimately the problem is that I can't really have conversations with many of my friends anymore. I don't think I'm better than anyone, we just don't meet on the same ground, or have the same interests. And when we were friends in high school, we had similar experiences and things to talk about. A lot of those things are gone, because I haven't really lived there for four years, and now I've moved to a completely different state.

Regardless, I would still like to write a rational entry about the problems I've been having with my friends. I think it's completely approriate to talk about the real problems I'm having with them, rather than just needlessly attacking people and hurting their feelings.

Shakespeare - Othello - Act One

Scene One
It is night, Iago and Roderigo have been arguing, the scene is a street outsie Brabantio's house in Venice. Iago is obviously manipulating Roderigo, and has also said that he hates Othello. He is jealous of both Othello and Cassio. He wishes to be upper-class. He claims Cassio is merely a tactician with no battle experience. Iago believes Othello chose Cassio as his lieutenant. Iago is only an ancient (= ensign). He believe appointments are given by favouritism. He says here that he does not like Othello, because the appointment was unjustly given to Cassio.
"I follow him to serve my turn upon him" - 41
He sets himself up in the role of clever slave: "trimmed in forms and visages of duty keep yet their hearts by attending on themselves" 49 - 50
"I am not what I am" 64, profanely alluding to God's "I am that I am" from 1 Corinthians 5.10.
They awaken Brabantio. Iago's repetitions are intended to generate hysteria. Thieves and fire - domestic threats? "Old" - first hint at Othello's age. "Ram" - old husband witha young wife was traditional butt of comedy. "Tupping" - first mention of sex, as animals in this case. "Devil" = black = Othello. Brabantio says that Roderigo is a repeatedly annoying suitor to Desdemona who has been banished from the house, and that he may be drunk. Threatens them with his status.
More animal (horse) and sex references 110 - 112, Barbary reference 110.
"I am one, sir, that comes to tell you your daughter
and the Moor are now making the beast with two backs." - reference to Rabelais.
Iago torments Brabantio with image of his daughter having sex with Othello - foreshadowing the same torments he tells Othello.
Iago says Othello is set to go to Cyprus. "Sagittary" Othello as half-man half-horse 156.
Brabantio acts like a cuckolded husband, and Desdemona is in fact missing. When they bring out light, Iago flees. They depart with Roderigo to find Othello and Desdemona.

Scene 2
Othello, Iago, and attendants with torches.
Iago is saying he could never murder anyone, but he thought about it with Roderigo - or Brabantio? He says people were speaking against Othello, and asks if they are really married, and says Brabantio, with his political power, will divorce them. Othello very calmly says everything will be alright due to his own duties to the Duke.
"What lights come yond?" 28 - poor eyesight?
Cassio enters and summons Othello to the Duke, because of something pressing with Cyprus.
"he to-night hath boarded a land carack:
If it prove lawful prize, he's made for ever." - sexual reference to Desdemona as a treasure ship.
Enter Brabantio and Roderigo with officers.
"Damned as thou art" = black = devil - 63
Desdemona was previously opposed to marriage with any of her white, upper class suitors.
"Would ever have, to incur a general mock,
Run from her guardage to the sooty bosom
Of such a thing as thou" 69 - 70. He accuses Othello of being an enchanter and pagan witch-doctor. They go to the duke to let him deal with it, and the summons.
"For if such actions may have passage free,
Bond-slaves and pagans shall our statesmen be."

Scene 3
Duke and senators sit at a table with lights and Attendants.
Turkish fleet is baring down on Cyprus, and the Turks are trying to trick them into thinking they are going to Rhodes. Enter everyone from scene 2. Duke employs Othello against Turks. Brabantio interrupts him, saying his daughter has been corrupted, and portrays Desdemona as quiet, shy, and virginal.
"Against all rules of nature" 102, "To find out practises of cunning hell" 103
The Duke requires real proof, and Desdemona is called for.

"Her father loved me; oft invited me;
Still question'd me the story of my life, From year to year, the battles, sieges, fortunes, That I have passed. I ran it through, even from my boyish days, To the very moment that he bade me tell it; Wherein I spake of most disastrous chances, Of moving accidents by flood and field Of hair-breadth scapes i' the imminent deadly breach, Of being taken by the insolent foe And sold to slavery, of my redemption thence And portance in my travels' history: Wherein of antres vast and deserts idle, Rough quarries, rocks and hills whose heads touch heaven It was my hint to speak,--such was the process; And of the Cannibals that each other eat, The Anthropophagi and men whose heads Do grow beneath their shoulders. This to hear Would Desdemona seriously incline: But still the house-affairs would draw her thence: Which ever as she could with haste dispatch, She'd come again, and with a greedy ear Devour up my discourse: which I observing, Took once a pliant hour, and found good means To draw from her a prayer of earnest heart That I would all my pilgrimage dilate, Whereof by parcels she had something heard, But not intentively: I did consent, And often did beguile her of her tears, When I did speak of some distressful stroke That my youth suffer'd. My story being done, She gave me for my pains a world of sighs: She swore, in faith, twas strange, 'twas passing strange, 'Twas pitiful, 'twas wondrous pitiful: She wish'd she had not heard it, yet she wish'd That heaven had made her such a man: she thank'd me, And bade me, if I had a friend that loved her, I should but teach him how to tell my story. And that would woo her. Upon this hint I spake: She loved me for the dangers I had pass'd, And I loved her that she did pity them. This only is the witchcraft I have used: Here comes the lady; let her witness it."

Desdemona confirms his story, and says he his her husband and she owes him her duty.

The Duke tells Brabantio to let it go and accept it, even though he is sad and angered.
Othello is ordered to go to Cyprus. He says he is naturally inclined to war. Desdemona asks to go, though it is against social norms. Othello assures them he wishes her to come along not because of sex, and rejects the body all together.
"I therefore beg it not, To please the palate of my appetite, Nor to comply with heat--the young affects In me defunct--and proper satisfaction. But to be free and bounteous to her mind"

Desdemona will go the next day with Iago, and Othello must go immediately.
Brabantio: "Look to her, Moor, if thou hast eyes to see: She has deceived her father, and may thee."
Roderigo says he will "incontinently drown" himself, which is a sexual innuendo. Iago convinces him it is not a human thing to do.

"Virtue! a fig! 'tis in ourselves that we are thus or thus. Our bodies are our gardens, to the which our wills are gardeners: so that if we will plant nettles, or sow lettuce, set hyssop and weed up thyme, supply it with one gender of herbs, or distract it with many, either to have it sterile with idleness, or manured with industry, why, the power and corrigible authority of this lies in our wills. If the balance of our lives had not one scale of reason to poise another of sensuality, the blood and baseness of our natures would conduct us
to most preposterous conclusions: but we have reason to cool our raging motions, our carnal stings, our unbitted lusts, whereof I take this that you call love to be a sect or scion."
Mock sermon - Galatians 6.7

Tells him repeatedly to go make money, almost hypnotizing him. He also says that Othello and Desdemona's relationship is purely sexual, and when they have both had their fill they will get bored and move on.

"Thus do I ever make my fool my purse: For I mine own gain'd knowledge should profane, If I would time expend with such a snipe. But for my sport and profit. I hate the Moor: And it is thought abroad, that 'twixt my sheets He has done my office: I know not if't be true; But I, for mere suspicion in that kind, Will do as if for surety. He holds me well; The better shall my purpose work on him. Cassio's a proper man: let me see now:
To get his place and to plume up my will In double knavery--How, how? Let's see:-- After some time, to abuse Othello's ear That he is too familiar with his wife. He hath a person and a smooth dispose To be suspected, framed to make women false. The Moor is of a free and open nature, That thinks men honest that but seem to be so, And will as tenderly be led by the nose As asses are. I have't. It is engender'd. Hell and night Must bring this monstrous birth to the world's light."
Believes Othello is sleeping with his wife - does he really? Plans to "get" both Othello and Cassio.

Shakespeare - Othello - Introduction

Based on the Arden Shakespeare. Editor is E. A. J. Honigman.

Is Othello the greatest tragedy?
Date (Late 1601 - ) 1602. Traditional date is 1603 or 1604.
Principle source is the Italian short story Hecatommithi (1565) by Giraldi Cinthio.
Is Othello based on the Moorish Ambassador to Elizabeth?

Moorish Embassy Posted by Picasa

Venice was a major trading rival to London, attracted many foreigners, was the pleasure capital of Europe, especially in sexual tolerance.
"Both ladies [wives and courtesans] are expensively dressed and, as Wotton and others confirm, could not be indistinguishable in clothes and manners."
Cyprus: Venetians maintained forces there, but there was a major threat from the Turks. Isle of Venus.
Should Othello be played as black or olive skinned? "Black" was applied loosely to darker skinned non-Europeans. "Only Othello's hands and face would have to indicate his ethnic background." He would not be dressed exotically. He is probably a north African Moor, because the places he names are in the Mediterranean world, and because of the Moorish Embassy in London. His age is as puzzling as his race. He is definitely older than Desdemona, perhaps between 40 and 50. Does he have poor vision? - Psychic need for ocular proof. Is he confident, or secretly insecure? Does he love Desdemona, or merely wish to possess her sexually? Is he a devout Christian, or is it only a mask? He changes more than other tragic heroes - there is a before and after self. We cannot believe him when he speaks about himself. He has a very contradictory nature. Is this meant to imply his "Otherness"? Emotional volatility, gullibility, superstition, murderousness, a (primitive?) need to worship or abase oneself. Race is essential to his character. He has no self-control later in the play. He makes animal noises and has a concentrated focus on his sense of smell. Need for assimilation. His past plays an integral part in the present, but what do we really know about it? Present reshapes the past. Editing of the past for an ulterior purpose. Failure to understand or know people throughout Othello. Racism: Europe's response to the Other. Othello cannot shake off his Otherness, and when he speaks it accentuates it.

He and Othello are often seen as "equal yet opposite." Othello is more complex and original. Iago is based on other characters and machiavels, esp. the clever servant. In terms of the plot, he and Othello mirror each other. "Motive-less Malignity." Hidden, subconscious motives. Resentment of priveledge and class, though he strives to be accepted as an equal. But just as Othello's speech is that of a foreigner, Iago doesn't really speak like the upper class. Does not understand women - sees them as sex objects. "We think not so much of the crimes they commit, as od the ambition, the aspiring spirit, the intellectual activity which prompts them to overleap these moral fences" - Charles Lamb. Iago is also chief humorist, though it is sadistic humor, megalomaniacal. He excels at short term tactics, but not at long term brilliance. "He has neither felt nor understood the spiritual impulses that bind people together."

Childlike qualities. Emotional dependence on Emilia. She is 15 or 16. Is their marrage ever consummated? Over-confidence and essential innocence. Is she strong or weak?

Mid-20's, attractive,and not physically like the Nurse from Romeo and Juliet, though she is like her in role and somewhat in personality. Is she guilty of acting as a passive accomplice? Is she afraid of Iago? Iago's plot hangs by a thread once her suspicions are aroused.

The relationship dynamics in this play are as complex and organic as the characters. Othello and Desdemona barely know one another. She is very impulsive and blold. Two other tense relationships with a lot of problems: Iago + Emilia, Cassio + Bianca. Desdemona is the angel figure, and Iago is the devil figure. Because of his Otherness, Othello stands between them, and his choice in the play is to choose one of them. One of Shakespeare's most original achievements in Othello is his exploration of the psychology of sex. Iago is obsessed with sex, and has many hang ups. Othello sexual inexperience, race, extreme passion, emotional immaturity. Emilia and Iago sexually mistrust one another. Cassio uses Bianca and worships Desdemona, who is childlike and non-sexual. Is Iago homosexual? This idea exists in the subconscious. Bed imagery. The smothering scene is a parody of the wedding night. In the beginning they speak the same language of love, but Othello stops loving her for no real reason. Feminism. Is Desdemona a figure for a virgin Christian martyr?
Shakespeare fills the play with moral questions, rather than judgements. Does the play have a moral? Is Othello's marriage a mistake? The marriage overturns all preconceived notions of Renaissance moral behavior. We are encourage to expect stereotypes of the characters, which Shakespeare has used in other plays, but then they are dashed. Challenge to locate the man behind the mask. Imagery: beds, night-time, arrivals, awakenings, domesticity, kneeling. Domestic tragedy?