What can we see about the treatment of love in literature from comparing Shakespeare and Browning? In Shakespearean ‘Othello’ and Borrowing’s ‘The Laboratory, it is implied that love was the cause of a desire for revenge on and the death of another character. In ‘Othello, Othello-despite loving her-desires revenge on Desman, believing she has been unfaithful, and irrationally decides to kill her: “l will withdraw/To furnish me with some swift means of death/For the fair devil” (Ill. Ii. 73-4), whilst in Borrowing’s poem ‘The Laboratory, the monologist desires revenge on their lover by poisoning the woman with whom the lover was unfaithful-“And Pauline should have Just thirty minutes to live! ” (VI. 3). All of these texts have dramatic conclusions as a result of each of the characters’ desires. The conclusion of Othello, however, shows that the strength of the love between Othello and Desman was enough to cause Othello to feel so much remorse that e killed himself after killing her: “O fool, fool, fool! ” (V. Ii. 319).
This Implies that, despite killing Desman, his love for her was enough to make him want to be with her forever-in the end. This contrasts with the negative impression that love inflicts death and instead, portrays that love is very powerful. Just like in ‘Othello, In ‘The Laboratory, the motive for death is love. The monologist decides to poison a woman with whom their lover has been unfaithful. This also seems to be quite an Irrational action, but, unlike in ‘Othello, the central character feels no remorse for doing what they are doing, implying they have a different kind of love; possibly a weaker one.
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Overall, by comparing the texts of Shakespeare and Browning, we can see that, In literature, love is very often portrayed as being negative: a motive for revenge and the cause of many deaths. In ‘Othello’ and ‘The Laboratory, both characters believe that the only way to sort out the problem of their lover being unfaithful, Is to murder hem, but they do not consider consulting the other person, Implying they do not understand the strength of love.
By comparing these texts, we can see that, In literature, love Is portrayed as being a negative emotion, often overpowering the logical mind, however, linking back to the above point about Othello remorse for his lover’s death, It can often be shown as a strong emotion that, In some cases, can result In positives, such as, the realization of the bond between lovers, but In others, can cause Irrational actions.