My aim in this study is to show how racist elements dominate the play, "Othello" by William Shakespeare. Generally, in Othello race and colour are important factors and they repeated in various ways. W. Shakespeare tries to instill the idea of equality in all people. He thinks that all humans on the earth created equally. Because of this reason, W. Shakespeare created Othello who is a protagonist as a black man. He gives Othello an important duty. Shakespeare portrayed Othello as a commander in the army of Venice and he is the husband of Desdemona who is white and wealthy woman. Obviously, Shakespeare uses black man for the role of important character. Besides, Shakespeare creates a romantic relationship between black and white (Othello & Desdemona) but most people think that their relationship is wrong. .
At the time the play was written, 1604, even the Queen of England was racist, so there must have been a strong hatred of blacks around that time. Donald Hall asserts that " Elizabethan society and theatre were more conservative. In this period, society were prosperous, expanding, energetic, adventurous and imperialistic. Elizabethan England was colourful, chaotic and relatively lawless." (Hall, p:200). As you see, in this period, society is more chaotic and we know that all notions about racism since today rooted from those times. .
According to Elizabethans all qualities of moors are all negative. At that time, moors were supposed sexual capacity, savage jealousy, superstitiousness and belief in magic, tendency to anger, cruelty and savagery.
Truly, it's still common not only in England but also all around the world. I believe that, by discovering America, slavery developed and in the end, it did not finished but decreased by Martin Luther King's effort in 70's. But still today, racist people feel same things towards to black people. That is to say, blackness in Elizabethan England was associated with evil and wickedness.