“[Emilia] Fie, fie upon thee, strumpet!/ [Bianca] I am no strumpet, but of life as honest/ As you that thus abuse me.” (Act V Scene i Line 133-135)

The word that gets used often in this Act is the word “strumpet” which means a woman who has a dishonorable sexual relationship with another person. This is a word that was used often to represent Bianca since she was a prostitute. Shakespeare must have used this word often in order to show how other people like Emilia who completely understand how women gets mistreated, would use that type of terms on prostitutes like Bianca. Emilia may not even know the type of circumstance Bianca is in and yet in the other scene Emilia had a speech about women who gets mistreated by men and how the things they learn about is taught by men. Shakespeare had also used the word “honest”, and its interesting because that word is often used throughout the play to represent Iago, and the word misrepresents him in many ways however others would not consider Bianca “honest” because of the type of lifestyle she has.

“[Othello] 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” (Act III Scene iii Line 399-401)

Iago had provoked Othello because Iago was telling Othello that he think Desdemona might be unfaithful. Othello is at the tip of his rage and says to Iago that he needs proof before he believes it. Othello uses the word “whore” which in modern days means to be a prostitute. In etymology it means to be a prostitute or committing adultery which is a crime. When they use whore it’s used in a way as being a whore is the worst act possible like a crime. Earlier another conversation Iago brought up was about how the people of Venice are different and because Othello is not from there he doesn’t know the culture of Venice. It’s something he doesn’t have knowledge on or understands so the only way he believes this act is if he sees it for himself, with his eyes. “Worth of man’s” was used because what Othello wanted to visually see was a proof that was so strong and holds great value above Othello’s soul.

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CC BY-SA 4.0 Close Reading Analysis Paragraphs by Nuong is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

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