Winter Will Be Here Soon -- Study hard as finals approach...


 
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Canterbury Tales - Wife of Bath

 

Chaucer portrays the Wife of Bath as if she is a hypocrite, 
although, beneath the words, there is a great deal of wisdom involved. 
The approach that I take, is the view that this tale is advice for 
women to take. This tale teaches women that there are times one should 
be a feminist and times you should not. If a women would be a feminist 
all her life, she probably wouldn't get anywhere in her life or with 
any man. If a woman were not to have a feministic character anytime of 
her life, she would be overwhelmed by most men, of work or whatever 
the case may be. 

 Early in The Wife of Bath, there is a quotation said by the wife 
of bath supporting the idea that she is feministic. "I don't deny
that I will have my husband both my debtor and my slave; and as long 
as I am his wife he shall suffer in the flesh. I will have command 
over his body during all his life, not he." In other words, she is 
saying that she will have total control over herself, her husband, and 
their household and very specifically, "...not he". This can be 
interpretated that her husband will not have the same privileges as 
her in the sense that he is like a 'slave' and she will 'command' over 
him.. This quotation seems as if the Wife of Bath is leaning toward 
the feministic opinion. 

 "Nevertheless, since I know your pleasure I'll satisfy your 
physical pleasure." This was said by the Wife of Bath and supports
the non-feministic view. The reason this is considered non-feministic 
is because the woman is giving in to the man's desire which goes 
against feministic beliefs. The Wife of Bath has a choice of not 
giving in to the man, but she decides to let the man have pleasure for 
his desire not hers, because she has experienced sex before and she 
knows how much men enjoy it. This quotation obviously goes against 
feministic beliefs, leaving an unanswered contradiction about the Wife 
of Bath. 

 My view on The Wife of Bath is negative. I feel that this tale is 
very vulgar and contains too much involvement of sex. Besides the fact 
of the tales vulgarness the Wife of Bath was a well told story and the 
message was well received. This story might seem hypocritical at 
first, but between the lines there is some helpful advice for many 
women in the world today. 
 



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