• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

"The Taming of the Shrew" could either be seen as offensive or acceptable to women dependant upon the era of which they lived, discussing Act 4 Scene 1.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

"The Taming of the Shrew" could either be seen as offensive or acceptable to women dependant upon the era of which they lived (16th century-the period of Shakespeare, or the 21st century). Act 4 Scene 1 is a main focal point to debate whether the play is seen as offensive to women. In Shakespeare's time, women were not treated humanely but more like objects. Men were seen as the superior sex of which had complete control over women and could marry who ever they wanted. The women had no say in who they married. Basically the two sexes were not treated equally. Also women could not go to school, but had to stay at home to cook and clean. Men could also bet on the behaviour of their wives to see which is the 'tamest'. Obviously a lot has changed since Shakespearian times and men and women are now treated equally and have the same rights as each other. ...read more.

Middle

Act 4 Scene 1, Line 172-4. Throughout this speech Petruchio is revealing his plan , which he hopes will tame Katherina. This quote means Petruchio still isn't feeding Katherina and wont until she submits, therefore she will never look upon him. This could again think be very offensive as Petruchio is not treating Katherina as a human, but as a bird of prey (wild hawk). Other examples of how badly women were treated at that time can be seen in Act 2 Scene 1; "Then tell me, if I get your daughter's love, What dowry shall I have with her to wife?" Petruchio-Act 2 Scene 1, Line 118-9 "After my death, the one half of my lands, And in possession twenty thousand crowns." Baptista-Act 2 Scene 1, Line 120-1 Not only is Katherina being tamed but before hand she is being auctioned off by her father to the highest bidder. These quotes show Petruchio asking what he will receive if he wins the love of Baptista's daughter (Katherina), and Baptista replies half his land when he dies and twenty thousand crowns because of her temper. ...read more.

Conclusion

In Act 5 Scene 2 the men bet on whose wife is most obedient; "..., Let's each one send unto his wife and he whose wife is most obedient to come at first when he doth send for her shall win the wager which we will propose" Act 5 Scene 2, Line 66-9. This again shows the women as objects and links to wealth. The men are the superior sex, which have control over all including their wives. My conclusion is, that 'The Taming of the Shrew' could definately be seen as offensive to women, especially in Act 4 Scene 1. The women are shown as betting objects and opportunities to gain in wealth and respect. They were tamed to be the perfect wives through starvation and captivity. Everything that was forced upon the women, were not to their best interests, but to the interests of the person doing it to them. How could The Taming of the Shrew be seen as offensive focussing specifically on Act 4 Scene 1? Michael Genever Page 1 5/3/2007 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Taming of the Shrew section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Taming of the Shrew essays

  1. Analyse Shakespeare's use of dramatic and poetic effects in Act 2, Scene 1 of ...

    in their marriages, the woman basically becomes the husbands property, marriages are supposed to be the bond of love. Petruchio and Baptista have conversations in Act 2, scene 1 about the dowry he will receive on marrying Katherina; for instance Petruchio gets right to the point by asking "What dowry shall I have with her to wife?"

  2. In this essay I will be focusing on Katherina, a character from 'The Taming ...

    I know you think to dine with me today, And have prepared great store of wedding cheer, But so it is, my haste doth call me hence, And therefore here I mean to take my leave'. (Act 3, scene 2, lines 183 to 187.)

  1. Examine closely Katherine's speech in Act 5 Scene 2 lines 136-179. What is your ...

    She talks of men as superior whilst degrading Bianca and the widow for the disrespect they have towards their men. In this speech Katherina says "A woman moved is like a fountain troubled, Muddy, Ill-seaming, thick, bereft of beauty, and while it is so, none so dry or thirsty, Will deign to sip, or touch one drop of it."

  2. What does the modern audience learn about marriages and the roles of men and ...

    This makes the audience curious because they would think that there is surely no such man that will tolerate a scold like her. In Shakespeare's time men hated scolds. Scolds were women who perpetually offended the public through their speech and whose behaviour was mostly disorderly and aggressive.

  1. The Taming of the Shrew: The Degrading of Women

    This is evident in the play as Baptista auctions his daughter off, awaiting the highest bid. Content you gentlemen; I will compound this strife. 'Tis deeds must win the prize, and be of both That can assure my daughter greatest dower Shall have my Bianca's love.

  2. Review of the Royal Shakespeare theatre, in Stratford upon Avon - 'Taming of the ...

    The doors stayed on the stage for most of the play. There was a ladder which took the actors on to railings which made a sort of raised platform this was used to enter and exit to a wing upstairs like when Kate was in Petruchios house for the first

  1. How do the Inductions and Act 1 Prepare Us for Comedy?

    understand or even place the humour in a tragedy, but it's always present even if it used simply as a devise to ease tension. Finally, the histories that became fashionable to write around Shakespeare's period are the simplest to define: they are basically chronicles of great English kings lives written as fiction in the form of a play.

  2. The Taming of the Shrew, By William Shakespeare, provides contemplation to various themes described ...

    She also quotes 'Thy head, thy sovereign; one that cares for thee, And for thy maintained; commits his body, to painful labour both by sea and land...Whilst thou liest warm at home, secure and safe;' A husband is there to care for a wife and can suffer the extremities of

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work