Conflicting Persepctives

Personal conflict is an anticipating and unavoidable aspect of the world in which squalor, personal estrangement and spiritual cynicism is compounded by fears of social rejection and misunderstanding. However, an individual’s capability to keep faith in the essential integrity of man and in his capacity for love and compassion enables his ability to cope and overcome the destructive effects of personal conflict. Through the prescribed text Othello, by William Shakespeare and the related texts, the song I was only 19, by John Schumann and the episode ‘Fat’ from the television series Absolutely Fabulous, by Jennifer Saunders, the various composers depict the meaning of personal conflict using different techniques, giving the responder different views on how people cope with their own individual struggles in life.

In the text Othello, William Shakespeare conveys personal conflict through the portrayal of his protagonist Othello. Seen as a ‘valiant’ man, a lack of trust and self belief turn him into an extremely jealous husband. The change to the ‘general’ came when the antagonist, Iago, convinced Othello that his wife was committing adultery. The plunge of a great man, resulting from this accusation consequently led to extreme resolutions. This was Othello’s only answer to solve his emotional distress.

The tragedy is intensified as Shakespeare initially outlines the many traits of his protagonist. Othello is portrayed as a noble gentleman who speaks well of him self. This is well reinforced, quite paradoxically by the villain Iago, as he is jealous of Othello’s power. The repetition of ‘my’ shows that he is a very self-assured man, and has a lot to say about his life.

The tragic motives increase extremely, with Othello now seen as a ‘blacker devil’. The dramatic use of contrast helps heighten the way he speaks of the perfection of his love. Elevated language, ‘Like to the Pontic Sea, who’s icy current, and compulsive course,...