Feminism & The Tempest

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Correia � PAGE �6�

Brandon Correia

Ms. Bradley


December 10, 2007

Feminism in the Tempest

Feminist theory aims to understand the nature of inequality and focuses on gender politics, power relations and sexuality. To do Feminist Research is to put the social construction of gender at the center of one 's inquiry. Feminist theory is about seeing gender as a basic organizing principle which profoundly shapes/mediates the concrete conditions of our lives. In the play The Tempest, by William Shakespeare Miranda is a perfect example of a woman 's role in literature from a feminist theorist perspective. In The Tempest, Miranda 's prescribed gender role and physical stature account for her naturally being subordinate to males.

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An example of this is when Miranda states, "you have often Begun to tell me what I am but stopped And left me in bootless inquisition." (1.2.35-40) it becomes clear that Miranda is the inferior character in this situation and this is the result of the dependency she relied on from Prospero. Miranda 's need for attachment is a main reason why she becomes inferior to the make characters in the play that plot action in solidarity.

If a woman 's priority is to pledge obedience to the male; she will become inferior to him. Tita Baumlin author of the book Holy Estates: Marriage and Monarchy in Shakespeare and His Contemporaries states that, "in Shakespeare 's time father 's interactions with daughters encourage them to be subordinate". If the female listens to the fathers words as commands she will than become an object that can be controlled by that male figure. Although every father would demand respect, there is a line between respect and objectification. Baumlin also argues that marriages were meant to replicate the social and political order, "metaphors of bondage in marriage tracts of the period were intended to reinforce the ruler 's absolute power". Criteria such
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