Othello – Theme of Manipulation (in progress)

“I follow him to serve my term upon him.” Iago only befriends Othello to get revenge on him for not promoting him. This sets the tone for his forthcoming actions. Iago is almost playing god here by trying to twist Othello’s fate and trying to serve his own perceived justice.
“I will wear my heart on my sleeve for daws to peck at; I am not what I am.” (Act I, Scene I) Iago confesses his sneaky ways from the outset, he appears to have no shame in this. The audience get the impression that he will be two faced.
Iago: “poison his delight’Iago: ‘Plague him with flies” Use of metaphors and figurative language suggest deceit. The words ‘poison’ and ‘plague’ possess connotations of death.
Through the trade of war I have slain men. Yet I do hold it very stuff of the conscience to do no contrived murder, I lack iniquity Irony here – Iago claims he isn’t selfish enough to murder someone for his own gain. He has murdered in battle but would not in real life
“With as little web… I will ensnare Cassio” Iago is soliloquizing to the audience his plot for revenge on Othello. The word “ensnare” suggests manipulation and almost trapping the innocent Cassio in his plot. His machiavellian nature is seen here through his sly and cunning ways
“But for my sport and profit” “Sport” implies to us that Iago sees this whole situation as a game, it is his own morbid form of entertainment. “Profit” connotes that he is out to gain from his actions, we know he desperately wants to be promoted by Othello.
“Put money in thy purse” Iago promises Roderigo that he can have Desdemona, even though she is married to Othello and accompanying him to Cyprus. All Roderigo needs to do is assume a disguise, go to Cyprus, and “put money in thy purse” meaning to gain the “profit” of Desdemona.
“In Venice, they let God see their pranks” Because Othello is not from Venice, Iago is able to manipulate him into believing that Venetian women are promiscuous, and therefore his wife may be that way too. 17th Century stereotype that women were all promiscuous and not to be trusted.
“For too much loving you” Iago tries to cover up his reasons for telling Othello such rumours by claiming it is out of love for him. Dramatic irony is here as the audience