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How do you respond to Shakespeare's presentation of Katherina in the play? You may confine yourself to two scenes of your choice or range more widely if you prefer.

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Introduction

Julia Cloke How do you respond to Shakespeare's presentation of Katherina in the play? You may confine yourself to two scenes of your choice or range more widely if you prefer. Katherina, at the beginning of the play, is shown as having many problems with her family. The inability of Kate's family to understand or deal with her is only a symptom of a greater underlying problem: the world in which Kate lives. Kate is obviously a highly intelligent, witty and spirited woman; however, the domestic Paduan woman's world leaves her no outlet in which to express her gifts. Padua has no place for Kate, and therefore rejects her as vile-tempered and laughable. Gremio dismisses her: "You may go to the devil's dam; your gifts are so great, here's none will hold you." (I.i.105-6). She is notorious throughout the city for her temper, and has been subject to humiliation and ridicule; the sarcasm with which she defends herself only adds to her image. A need for love and acceptance has turned to self-hatred, aggressiveness and defensiveness. Herein lies Kate's biggest problem. She is unable to let anyone in. Contrasting this is the 'perfect' woman, her sister Bianca, who appears to be well mannered and knows her place in society is under her father, or once married, her husband. ...read more.

Middle

By withholding items from Katherina he has the upper hand in this crafty trickery, "Go on and fetch our horses back, " he says as Katherina argues that the globe is the sky is in fact the sun, not the moon. Katherina eventually backs down, saying that; "be it moon, or sun, or what you please." In this scene Katherina never gives us reason to believe she is actually being serious when she is 'submitting' to Petruchio. Katherina's replies to Petruchio are often very quick and use much the same language as Petruchio, for example; Petruchio I say it is the moon. Katherina I know it is the moon. Shakespeare writes his verse in lines of ten syllables, this indentation in Katherina's line represents her jumping in quickly to finish Petruchio's line of ten syllables. Petruchio often uses the tactic of using more words than are necessary in order to take control of a conversation; he is a skilled linguist. We see Katherina doing this as well in order to mimic Petruchio and the way he talks. 'Young, budding virgin, fair, fresh and sweet whither away or where is thy abode? ...read more.

Conclusion

She has been deprived sleep and is wearing the simply clothes that she has left because the Tailor was accused of making terrible clothes. So maybe she is being ironical because she herself is not beautiful. Another example is when she describes the women as, "froud, " which means shrewish, knowing that she herself has been called such a thing too. She could be making a mockery of herself and of men's shallow opinion of women. "Vail your stomachs, " Katherina says and let your husband look after you. Accept your faults and his, but never argue back to your husband. She wants women to lower their pride, but in the first meeting between Petruchio and herself she did no such thing. Instead she gave as good as she got and fought everything Petruchio said about her, "If you strike me, you are no gentleman." For people who believe that Katherina really has changed and has finally been tamed by the only man in the play capable of doing so there are also examples of this too. "Our bodies are soft, and weak, " which is true because in Elizabethan times woman did not work. Their place was considered to be in the home, looking after the children because women could not perform manual labour or learn, as it would infect their mind. ...read more.

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