That comes as no surprise in “Othello,” sharply directed here by Nigel Shawn on a modern set with overly literal projections.
Though race can’t help but be a theme in “Othello,” it is not the main one here; Iago’s hatred, and Othello’s susceptibility to it, seem to stem less from each man’s response to outsiderness than from their common fear of cuckoldry. (Iago imagines that Othello has slept with his wife, Emilia, here a soldier in Desdemona’s retinue, not just her maid.) The women devise and
enact “scripts” of comeuppance for the men.
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