Joan of Arc had a very significant influence on society in the middle ages. It was not only for being a heroine and saint she was recognised for but she was also recognised as a leader and founder of the feminists. Joan became a role model to many women as she symbolised individual and independent thinking. Joan helped show that women could fight and had the same strength as men. A little while after Joan’s death, women stepped out of their traditional jobs/roles and adopted the characteristics of men. Women were allowed to fight in wars, play in male sports, be educated male schools and universities, be employed as equals alongside men in the workforce, and become more than just the usual housewife. This was all because of Joan’s example.
One of the first reasons why Joan of Arc should be considered great is that she pioneered the idea that women can be strong. She was a powerful young woman in a time when her gender was expected to be meek and delicate. In the fifteenth century, most women would be expected to marry or become a nun. (6) Men would typically go off to do the fighting as the women stayed home with the children. However, Joan had a different idea as to what she would do with her life. Instead of accepting the marriage her father arranged for her she refused the match. She then continued to defy social norms by cropping her hair, dressed in men’s clothing, and riding to her king to offer herself up as a military asset. (4) She committed her life to serving her
Shakespeare’s Henry V presents a man transformed from rowdy teenager to righteous king. With the death of Henry’s father, Henry’s “wildness…/Seemed to die too” (1.1.26-27). While Henry has seemingly transformed into a powerful man awarded praise, his actions at times seem morally questionable and disingenuous as he continually deflects blame on others and contradicts his notions for peace. Throughout the play, Henry’s speeches persuade and manipulate audiences as he effectively uses the power of rhetoric to achieve his goals. He has the power to intimidate his enemies, uplift his soldiers, and mold himself into whoever he needs to be. With the change of Henry’s character came a greater title and the responsibility for an entire nation, causing him to abandon his outwardly destructive behavior and dissemble. Shakespeare thus contends that there is a difference between being a good person and a successful leader; national heroism and effective kingship is not necessarily attained through moral actions, but rather through the art of powerful rhetoric and the ability to seem moral and virtuous rather than to be moral and virtuous, thereby mimicking some characteristics of how a successful ruler should appear, as suggested in Machiavelli’s The Prince. While Henry is certainly ruthless at times, his ability to assume the roles necessary for successful leadership is what makes him a great king.
Henry V is a wise and loyal king, changing from a wild youth to a mature king. He is described to be an intelligent, thoughtful and an efficient statesman. He thinks carefully whether to invade France or not which represents his responsible character. King Henry gives a very strong speech which gave courage and confidence to his army that they could win the battle. This character describes him to be a king of great ability to fight and having good administrative skills. Throughout the play Henry’s nature is religious, merciful and compassionate.
In every society each gender’s behavioral response is often a reflection of the societal influences that have been instilled since birth. In every society each gender is subjected to certain roles. Males having to suppress their emotions while women are able to be emotional beings. Women being shunned for exhibiting characteristics of the opposite sex. Although, we live in a society that harps on individuality and self-expression, it is clear that this only applies when individuals do not feel inferior. Additionally, self-expression is only situational and accepted based off of certain agendas. In the following story, Porphyria’s Lover by Robert Browning, we are able to analyze how a male reacts to feeling inferior to a woman. In The Yellow Wallpaper, which is written by Charlotte Perkins, we are able to analyze how her husband’s lack of understanding and inability to communicate with his wife ultimately leads to her insanity. In each of these stories, gender roles are being depicted in a negative and positive way. Through the character’s actions were able to learn how society views each gender in the time in which the story takes place.
From his fifteen year minority to the inept rule of the rest of his reign, Henry VI was a "child", at least as far as governing ability was concerned. The period of his minority and the time that he was the titular king laid the groundwork for the Wars of the Roses. Had Henry been an intelligent king, with at least some political acumen, and the ability to win the respect of his nobles, their may have never been any Wars of the Roses. But his weakness in allowing government by favorites and governing foolishly on his own, at the very least directed his country down the road to a bloody civil war.
When observing gender in our society, women and men are stereotyped with specific roles. Men have always been seen as the family’s main source of income whereas the women take care of their home and children. However, Shakespeare challenges these gender roles in his play with the three female characters Goneril, Regan, and Cordelia. While all three are independent, powerful women and even lead their armies into battle, the men seem to be foolish and weak such as King Lear and Albany. Furthermore, Mira cel Batran makes a point in her essay, “Feminist Reading of William Shakespeare’s King Lear”, that although women are regarded as dependent on men, Shakespeare explains that it can be the exact opposite. The men seem to depend on the women such as King Lear depending on Cordelia and Albany depending on Goneril. Shakespeare, in his play, King Lear, portrays women who are strong and intelligent and men who are weak or overpowered by female characters, challenging the societal belief that women are inherently less than or dependent on men.
Joan is able to provide the reader with a vivid description of the anxieties and ordeals of being a female throughout childhood and adolescence. She starts out with the simple desire to love and be loved, to find acceptance. These desires are not gender specific, as both males and females strive to be love and be loved and find acceptance. The difference is how women and men actually find these. Due to constant victimization by others a pattern of outsiders becomes Joan’s guard and vengeance. Joan's early misery and resentment causes her to see life as her enemy. Because Joan is made to feel as though she is an object, as many women in her time as well as our own feel too, Joan learns to use idealization as a weapon that will reach her emotionally unreachable mother: Joan claims to defy every effort to make her reduce out of a fear of assimilation and loss of autonomy: "I wasn't going to let myself be diminished, neutralized. I wouldn't ever let her make me over in her image, thin and beautiful" (Atwood, 85-6). This in her mind would be surcoming to the gender stereotype that woman not only should fit into, but had to fit into. It was her own way of rebelling against what a woman should be and being herself. Whether this was the correct way to go about it, her reasons were her reasons and that is what is important to her. Unfortunately this only caused a vicious circle. The more she rebelled against the gender norm for her
Unlike Hal, King Henry’s role consist of three qualities that radiate kingship, the traits being composed, assertive and commanding. Despite these traits being essential to kingship, they ultimately lead to the court turning against King Henry and planning a rebellion against him. When discussing news of war and casualties in his throne room, Henry remains composed and finds the positive points in the situation rather the
subject to the analysis of the writers and artists of the day. This is no less true in the context of Elizabethan England. Arguably the most famous of all of Elizabethan creatives, Shakespeare contributed vastly to this reshaping of the relationship between ruler and subject. Henry IV Part 1 in particular was a commentary on modern times, relating to and helping shape perceptions of Queen Elizabeth I, as the character Henry IV formed a direct parallel to Elizabeth. Both monarchs experienced the question of legitimacy and the resistance that went with it, but most important is the portrayal of Henry himself. He was feminized through Shakespeare’s description and use of language, and, to Elizabethan audiences, would have called forth an image of Elizabeth herself. Henry’s relationship with Hal and his subjects supports this theory because he was, in many ways, maternal, and Elizabeth often referred to herself in a maternal fashion; both rulers are mothers in their own way. Henry’s close association with Elizabeth proves the immutability of Elizabeth in the annals of English history and, in the end, legitimized her rule at a point in time at which many believed her to be the opposite.
Joan’s inspiration struck. The people of Joan’s village had already fled,but “Led by the voices of her saints, Joan traveled in May 1428 from Domrémy to Vaucouleurs, the nearest stronghold still loyal to the Dauphin, where she asked the captain of the garrison, Robert de Baudricourt, for permission to join the Dauphin” (britannica.com). But gaining respect in a male dominate society was going to be hard to for Joan.
Cathy’s Gender during this time was more of a struggle in her becoming a successful ager since in the time of her childhood and young adulthood the roles in which people saw woman in were changing rapidly. This made it harder for Cathy to detriment for herself the way she saw herself as a person.
I have thought about many different ways to organize this paper and have come to the conclusion that the best way to approach the topic is on a book-by-book basis. My perceptions of the gender biases in these books vary greatly and I did not want to begin altering my views on each so that they would fit into certain contrived connections. What interests me most in these stories is how the authors utilize certain character’s within their given environment. Their instincts and reactions are a wonderful window into how the authors perceive these “people” would interact with their surroundings and often are either rewarded or punished by the author through consequences in the plot for
All over the world, societal roles of women are different. This has not changed despite centuries of time passing. Roman and medieval women, though parts of different cultures and separated by distance, were very similar.