The Wife Of Bath 's Prologue By Geoffrey Chaucer

1694 WordsOct 9, 20157 Pages
During the Middle Ages men were on top of the world in every aspect of life. They were kings, rulers, knights, and heroes and every woman would gladly forfeit her will for whatever they wanted, at least this was the socially accepted norm. Quite often, however, this was not the case as seen in the “Wife of Bath’s Prologue” written by Geoffrey Chaucer. The Wife of Bath was an unconventional woman who acted like the men of the age in multiple ways. The male pilgrims in Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales were uncomfortable with her behavior because she was manlier than they were. The prologue begins with the wife, Alys, immediately stepping out of line and asserting herself as an expert on a subject matter. She states, “Experience, though noon auctoritee/ Were in this world, is right ynough for me” (1-2) Women at the time were not supposed to have knowledge over any subject, save looking pretty, and the fact that Alys not only knew about how marriage, but had experience in it scared the men. In addition to this, she admitted that the experience that she had in marriage was not sufficient evidence for having knowledge of a subject for most of the world and declared that it was enough for her. The authority to control knowledge, both from declaring it worthy to be used in an argument and having it in the first place, is something that was exclusively for men. The wife accomplished both in the opening two lines of her prologue. In order to further her command of knowledge, she shows
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