How do Iago and Cassio differ in Act 2 Scene 3?
Shakespeare uses a number of techniques to convey to the reader the idea of trust. This idea stems from the concept of doubt and deceit, showing us that whom we may truly believe to be the ones trying to help us and be friendly to us in our time of need may in fact be the dishonest one after all.
During Act 2 Scene 3, a lot is learnt about the characters of both Iago and Cassio; however these traits are discovered differently by the reader and by the characters, adding dramatic irony to the story.
One of the ways in which the two characters are portrayed as different roots to how the other characters portray them, compared to how the reader may portray them. Iago, for example, is respected by his peers, included of which is Othello. Often he is even referred to as “Honest Iago”, however this is because they do not see beyond the superficial exterior and see the mendacious, manipulative person that he really is. However, this side of Iago is shown to the reader by the way he reveals his plans against Cassio. The dramatic irony that the reader can predict what will happen as the story progresses, but yet is hopeless to prevent it, reflects how Iago “knows” that Othello is having an affair with his wife, but is reluctant to try to stop it by means other than to ruin Othello’s life completely.
Cassio, on the other hand is known by the reader to be a respectable lieutenant, however the view of him by the characters changes. The characters notice how a drunk and disorderly Cassio assaults Roderigo; however what is not seen is how Cassio was manipulated by Iago. As a result, Iago is seen as more honest, and Cassio is thought of as untrustworthy (as shown more thoroughly in Act 3 scene 3). The irony of this is that Cassio is honest and Iago is not.
Another way in which they differ, rather than the way they are viewed, is how they act. Cassio is shown to be a romantic person by the way he...