This lesson uses Othello to explore early modern and contemporary attitudes to race and gives students supported practice in analysing and interpreting extracts of the play. Students will be introduced to four key characters, will engage in role play and will use persuasive language to act out a mock court case. The session culminates in a discussion of how current issues pertaining to race interact with those in the play, and can be extended by writing a formal letter.


Topic: Shakespeare: Race in Othello

Level: C2

Time: 2 hours


  • To develop students’ ability to read and analyse Shakespearean language.
  • To give practice in summarising an argument and using persuasive language in spoken and written form.
  • To identify and discuss issues of race and racism in Othello.
  • To understand and appreciate the relevance of Shakespeare in exploring contemporary issues.

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