Essays24.com - Term Papers and Free Essays
Search

Richard And Iago: Rational, Sensitive, Or Vegetative?

Essay by   •  November 3, 2010  •  746 Words (3 Pages)  •  1,603 Views

Essay Preview: Richard And Iago: Rational, Sensitive, Or Vegetative?

Report this essay
Page 1 of 3

Can humans have three souls? Or are there three parts to the human soul? Most people would say that a person has only one soul. However, the human soul is very complex, which explains why there are so many parts to it. In the Elizabethan period, people understood that there were three "souls" in a person, or three parts to the human soul. These were the rational, sensitive, and vegetative souls. Both of the plays Richard the Third and Othello by William Shakespeare are examples of this concept. The characters of Richard in Richard the Third and Iago in Othello each are influenced by the rational, sensitive, and vegetative souls as they were understood by the Elizabethans.

During the Elizabethan period, the rational soul was understood to be that part of a person that was the closest to God. This soul caused the person to be more rational in thinking and to behave logically. The main characters in each of these plays are not governed by the rational soul. Richard is driven by his desire to be the king of England, and Iago is driven by his hatred of Othello. Richard becomes a ruthless murderer who will stop at nothing to be king. He indirectly kills his brother King Edward the Fourth, kills his nephews who are heirs to the throne, and anyone else who he believes is in his way. Iago is also very cold-hearted. He is Othello's lieutenant, and, as Othello believes, his good friend. However, Iago devises a plan to destroy Othello. By doing so, he must also destroy those closest to Othello, most notably his wife Desdemona. Iago does this simply because he is able to. In this way, the two characters ignore the rational soul and are not guided by it.

The sensitive, or passionate soul was understood to govern that part of a person that looks past all logic and reason. Iago and Richard are somewhat governed by this soul in that they both are passionate about what they are doing. Richard is driven by his desire to be king. In his pursuit of the throne, he overlooks all logical thinking. Instead, he focuses only on what he must do in order to reach his goal. This shows how good of a planner he is. Iago also does this, although his goal is not as clear. He concentrates on destroying or discrediting the people closest to Othello. In this way, he eventually destroys Othello. Both Richard and Iago are partially guided by the passionate soul. Though love is not the reason behind their actions, the two characters share a common passion for evil.

The

...

...

Download as:   txt (4 Kb)   pdf (70.1 Kb)   docx (9.6 Kb)  
Continue for 2 more pages »
Only available on Essays24.com
Citation Generator

(2010, 11). Richard And Iago: Rational, Sensitive, Or Vegetative?. Essays24.com. Retrieved 11, 2010, from https://www.essays24.com/essay/Richard-And-Iago-Rational-Sensitive-Or-Vegetative/7282.html

"Richard And Iago: Rational, Sensitive, Or Vegetative?" Essays24.com. 11 2010. 2010. 11 2010 <https://www.essays24.com/essay/Richard-And-Iago-Rational-Sensitive-Or-Vegetative/7282.html>.

"Richard And Iago: Rational, Sensitive, Or Vegetative?." Essays24.com. Essays24.com, 11 2010. Web. 11 2010. <https://www.essays24.com/essay/Richard-And-Iago-Rational-Sensitive-Or-Vegetative/7282.html>.

"Richard And Iago: Rational, Sensitive, Or Vegetative?." Essays24.com. 11, 2010. Accessed 11, 2010. https://www.essays24.com/essay/Richard-And-Iago-Rational-Sensitive-Or-Vegetative/7282.html.