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Women's Roles During The Shakespearean Era

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Introduction

The Role of Women during Shakespearean Times Did you know that women were not allowed on the Renaissance English stage during the Shakespearean Era? In fact, women were played by young men and boys. Many plays told tales of the hardships women faced in relationships as well as wives who were greatly tested. Women did not begin to appear on stage until around the 17th century. In addition to theatre, women were deprived of several other things such as a proper education, the right to vote, and the opportunity to hold office. Although women were not allowed a formal education, several women, such as Queen Elizabeth had private tutors beginning at the age of five. Some of the languages they learned were Latin, Italian, Greek and French. Also, women were not permitted to enter professions in law, medicine, and politics. ...read more.

Middle

The reason for this is because she was one of the first English women to achieve a major reputation for her literary works and literary patronage. There were several differences in the way single and married women were treated. For example, there were not many opportunities open to single women, especially if you were poor. Single women who were wealthy could be heiresses of property, mistresses of their estates and wield power within their communities. However, single women who were poor could only get long-term occupations in domestic services. In addition, single women were often accused of being witches, therefore, most women married. Women were raised to believe that ?they weren?t as good as men?. Men were considered the superior sex. This meant the woman had to listen to the men. ...read more.

Conclusion

They were taught how to take care of a household and become housewives. This meant that they were completely dependent on their partners through life. Women in Shakespearean times were also not allowed to speak freely. Such women were label as ?scolds? and were considered a threat to the public. Punishments for this act included public humiliation and abuse. In conclusion, during the Shakespearean era, women did not have nearly as much power as men and were not seen as equals. Men were the superior gender, and women were to only be seen, not heard. In several of the plays written by Shakespeare, he showed how poorly women were treated and their lack of power; however, the female characters in Shakespeare?s plays were portrayed as more intelligent than the men. It is fascinating to note that although most decisions were made by the men, it was a woman who was head of the government and sat on the throne as the queen. ...read more.

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