In the Wife of Bath 's tale, the main idea we can get is that women want dominance over men (Chaucer 143). Back in Medieval England, I think it would have been a far fetched idea for women to have dominance over men. For most of history, we see women being a submissive partner to a strong and noble man. Dominance over the noble husband would be a fantasy that a wife could only dream of because she knew it would never happen. If you were to fast forward to the 1900’s, a typical household still consists of a mom, dad, and a number of children. You keep the general idea of the dad going off to work while the kids catch a bus or walk to school. During this time period however, you still don’t see a lot women going out of the house in uniforms because their job is to stay at home and take care of the house. However at this point in time, some women are going out to get an education. By getting an education, it will help give women a better shot at getting successful jobs. Although there is still discrimination against women, they now have the capability to go out and get a job because they have the knowledge to do so. If you fast forward to present day, most people don’t consider staying home to clean the house a job unless you’re a maid. The role of women in present day is almost the same as the role of men. Women go to college to get a good paying job like men. According to a study done by the IWPR, women receive more college and graduate degrees than men. However, we
“The life so short, the craft so long to learn” (Famous Quotes). The Canterbury Tales is enriched with humanistic merit that allows the reader to sharpen his or her own craft of life. Specifically, “The Wife of Bath’s Tale” and “The Clerk’s Tale” are embodied with multiple struggles of life that pertain to life in the present. Despite seven centuries of society constantly evolving, the two stories’ plots can still be further analyzed through similar themes about relationships that pertain to modern society and how rhetorical strategy allows the audience to relate to the narrative characters.
that he never went to hell (272). She clearly valued sex as the most important attribute of a husband for, “…in our bed he was so fresh and gay….Heaven knows whenever he wanted it- my belle chose-, thought he had beaten me in every bone…”(272) Even though her final husband had beaten her, because he was good in bed with her she felt she loved him the best of them all (272). Clearly, The Wife of Bath valued three things in her marriages, sex, power, and money. In her tale we find that power is an important role to women in marriage. A knight, after raping a women is spared by a queen (282) but in order to save his life, he has one year (283) to find, “What is the thing that women most desire”(282)? After searching, he finds no answer but on his way home finds an old women who promises she will save him, he must promise to do what she asks of him after however, and he agrees (285). When he and the old lady meet with the queen, he exclaimed, “A women want’s the self-sovereignty over her husband as over her lover, and master him; he must not be above her” (286). This answer is perfectly inline with The Wife of Baths views, she always wants to be more powerful than her husband. When the old lady says he must marry her, he protests but soon she offers him two choices, he can have her be old and ugly till she dies, but loyal, or she can be young and pretty and take chance that she might not remain faithful (291). He gives his answer to be that she may choose, thus giving her the
Often at times people can feel disconnected from themselves, from the world, or even friends and families; Therefore, causing tension in relationships. Which was displayed in “The Wife of Bath’s Tale” when the knight searches all over the world to find out what women most desire in a man. Also in “One Amazing Thing” there are various stories from different characters that have had trouble with personal stories and how one gender or religious belief can be more dominate than the other.
Geoffrey Chaucer’s “The Wife of Bath’s Tale” is an important part of his most famed work, The Canterbury Tales. One of the most respected highly analyzed of all of the tales, this particular one is important both for its character development and its prevailing themes. It seamlessly integrates ideas on society at that time with strong literary development. This work stands the test of time both because of its literary qualities and because of what it can teach us about the role of women in late Medieval society.
There is an evident change from women being completely subjected to men's superiority and authority to them starting the question the social rules and beliefs. Through "The Wife of Bath" Chaucer illustrates women’s need to be in control in order for men to be happy. Through Alisoun, Chaucer demonstrates how women are beginning to advocate for their rights and illustrates medieval society’s views of women in power ultimately conveying that women need to be in power for men to be happy
The Wife of Bath begins the prologue to her tale by boasting of her experience in marriage. She has married five men already, and ignores the idea that this is a reproach to Christian principles. She is merely adhering to the Christian principle of "be fruitful and multiply." She cites the case of King Solomon, who had multiple wives, and tells the group that she welcomes the opportunity for her sixth husband. She also points out that Jesus never lays down a law about virginity, and essentially states that we have the parts for sex and should use them as such. The Pardoner objects to the Wife of Bath's musings on marriage, but she decides to tell
The Wife of Bath 's Prologue and Tale is about female empowerment it shows strong protagonists. I believe Geoffrey Chaucer used The Wife of Bath’s Tale to advocate for feminism. Chaucer used a strong female character to expose female stereotypes. It was an oppressive time for women in male-dominated society. During the Middle Ages, Chaucer wrote from a woman’s point of view something that was not normal at that time. He set his feminist ideals through the characters of the Wife of Bath and the old woman. He used subtle methods like humor to show his ideals. During Chaucer’s time nobody was used to the idea of women being equal to men, this idea did not exist. Chaucer expressed his ideas in the Wife of Bath’s Prologue and Tale by being one of the first to understand and acknowledge a women’s struggle in society, through this tale he shows the difference between men and women and their positions of power. In the Wife of Bath’s Tale, feminism is showed by the knight recognizing and listening to his wife. Chaucer is a feminist for his time because he used humor to mask his unpopular ideas he used these characters to voice his opinions.
The tale of the wife of Bath or Dame Alison is well suited to her because of the following reasons, Through the prologue of the Wife of Bath, we learned that Dame Allison knows how to manipulate men with their ideals, in the prologue, she explained her ideals about man, and woman relationship, also, she used some characters from the bible and scriptures to prove her different point of view in her arguments. The same does the ugly wife in her tale when she is convincing he husband about loving her without carrying the fact that she is ugly and poor. For example, the ugly wife explained to her husband about how Jesus being the king of heaven came to earth and choose to be poor. also, she mentioned how the philosophers like Seneca said that you
Can men and women ever truly understand each other? Readers see that in “the Wife of Bath’s Tale” that a knight was sent on a year quest to find out what women actually want. In “A Vindication of the Rights of Woman” that she views that women should be treated equal but they are treated only for their beauty not their intelligence. In “The Men we Carry in Our Minds” it shows how different women and men were treated. men only having manual labor jobs and women taking care of children not much in between. (Chaucer pp.77, Sanders pp.131, Wollstonecraft pp. 114).
The Canterbury Tales provides an array of tales, specifically two tales in which one better provides the most meaning and delight compared to the other. “The Wife of Bath’s Prologue and Tale” represents the view and desires of women during that time period. “The Pardoner’s Prologue and Tale” describes the type of person the Pardoner is along with how money can be evil. In The Canterbury Tales, “The Pardoner’s Tale”, provides the most moral meaning compared to “The Wife of Bath’s Tale” by stating that greed can manipulate people into plotting unspeakable actions unto each other.
In The Canterbury Tales, the Wife of Bath gives an in-depth look on her life and understanding on the world as she perceives it. During her Prologue, we learn that what she calls experience stems from her first three marriages, but during her last two there is a shift in power. The Wife of Bath demonstrates her understanding and power throughout her first three marriages both physically and emotionally and the contrast of her lack of control in her last two, thus revealing the true meaning behind what she believes is experience during these marriages. The Wife of Bath’s authority can be viewed as realist when paralleled to the chain of being because of the emotional control she has over her previous husbands and the simple fact that she
Her self-proclaimed wisdom and experience makes her justly and to a certain extent credible enough to stand in the position that she does that is as heroine of her time. The Wife of Bath's Prologue is lengthy but everything said is important and captures a prime image of who the Wife of Bath truly is but also the society women are dealing with. Also her prologue retaliates against the problems of inferiority of women at hand. She does her best to defend herself for her life occurrences as well as preserving the merit of women. She explains "a sensible woman only busies herself to win love were there's none"(177), although one may say that this is a negative way for a woman to gain power .The positive note is that the wife of Bath cares to give the only advise she knows that has worked for her. The fact that the Wife of Bath cares about sharing advice in a sense that will cost women a chance to gain power ,cancels out the seven deadly sin of greed in her character.
The Wife of Bath uses bible verses in “The Wife of Bath’s Prologue.” Further, she employs the verses as an outline of her life to find reason in God to justify her actions. Nevertheless, the purpose of the verses differs within each stanza of the poem. The Wife of Bath is a sexually promiscuous, lustful, and manipulative woman. She marries men one after the other as they get older and die. In order to combat and overthrow the speculation and criticism being thrust upon her by societal norms because of her marriages, the wife turns to specific bible passages to find reason in life and support for her actions (Article Myriad.com). When the wife is having sex quite frequently and with different men she is said to be fruitful and multiplying. According to the wife, this is what she is told to do in the bible passage, which she has misinterpreted. Ironically, The Wife of Bath is using a predominantly male dominated book to back up and support her reasons for women being equal to men (Article Myriad.com). Not only has she referred to the benefits of adultery through the bible, she has also attempted to undermine the power of men in the very same way she has attempted to prove that the genders are equal. From this, it can be interpreted that although the wife claims to be providing evidence for women being equal to men, she is actually saying that women are better than men. She misinterprets the readings of the bible and male written passages on purpose in order to suit her needs.
The investigation into whether or not Geoffrey Chaucer was ahead of his time in terms of his views on feminism has been up for debate for hundreds of years. The Wife of Bath’s Prologue is just one solitary
Dominant and submissive roles have existed in relationships between men and women since the dawn of time. Since then, Women have overturned public oppressions, e.g. working outside the house, voting, and having equal rights to men, but have yet to establish a non-submissive relationship with their male partners. The moral of Wife of Bath is the desire women have to have power over their husband and how this dominance is beneficial for them and through the course of the tale, the speaker makes an effort to express her views of control in a happy marriage.