How far do you agree with the opinion that courtship and marriage are undermined and ridiculed in “The Taming of the Shrew”? BY tied How far do you agree with the opinion that courtship and marriage are undermined and ridiculed In “The Taming of the Shrew”? Shakespearean drama “The Taming of the Shrew” is set in the Elizabethan era. And marriage and courtship was very different than how it is in the present Back then it was the parents who picked suitors for their daughters.

This choice would be final for the daughters but often women rebelled against the decision as they wanted to whose their own suitors. “Romeo and Juliet” is an example of this. In our “Taming of the Shrew’ this is no different as Baptists Manila chooses the suitors in which marry his daughters. We first see this undermining of courtship and marriage when Patriotic speaks of his view on marriage, in Act I “be she as foul as Florentine’ love, as old as Sibyl, and as crust and shrewd as Socrates Xanthiums or a worse”.

He doesn’t care what his wife will be like; all he cares for Is money. This Is a very disrespectful view of marriage and a great first Instance of Illustrating Elizabethan attitudes to It. The courting between Petroleum and Katherine Is very differently than typical courting that couples would participate In. Patriotic prefers a more forceful approach to courting as, In Act II Scene I, he pulls her onto his lap and “holds her” down so she cannot move.

Between them they start to Insult and make a mockery of each other for example “No such Jade as you, if me you mean” and “What is your crest-a coxcomb? ” This wouldn’t be the standard for courting during the Elizabethan Era, as fighting and mocking each other are definite wrongs. This is because Putsches and Gathering’s personalities clash and this Is a great example of how Shakespeare mocks the traditions of marriage and courtship. Courtship and Marriage are again jeered as Baptists treats it like an auction and Grimier and Traction are bidding in Act II Scene I, “… Hat she shall have, besides an argosy… ” Says Grimier and Traction replies with “… Than three great argosies, besides two eyeglasses and twelve tight galleys… “. This bargaining’ between the men is like a business transaction, Baptists will ‘sell’ his daughter, Bianca, to the highest bidder whoever has the most none and dower to give her it they should pass away before her. This takes away the romantic side of marriage as the “falling In love” aspect Is lost, as It Is decided by her father. Popla Kahn said “Baptists Is determined not to marry the sought-after Blanch until he gets an offer for the unpopular Kate, not for the sake of conforming to the hierarchy of age as his opening words Imply, but out of a merchant’s desire to sell all the goods In his warehouse” and I agree with this statement as marriage should be about love and romance, not the father getting rid of his daughters. It mocks the traditions of marriage and does add an element of humor to the piece. A superb illustration of the mockery of marriage can be found in the Wedding Scene in Act Ill Scene II.

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Firstly, instead of the traditional “doublet. Breeches, hose, box pleated neck “a new hat and an old Jerkin; a pair of old breeches thrice turned……… Which hath two letters for her name fairly set down in studs, and here and there packed with Peachtree”. This straight away makes the wedding a mockery as this not only embarrasses himself, but Katherine and her family. This would cause a lot of aught in the audience as on stage, Patriotic would look like an ignoble halfwit. The mockery continues as Patriotic is absolutely absurd.

He gave the priest “such a cuff’ and doesn’t even let Katherine have her reception as he wants to take her home straight away; he deprives her of this which offends the marriage traditions. It is arguably one of the most unusual and unpleasant wedding in literary history. Later in the wedding he pretends that the wedding guest are plotting to kidnap his Katherine, “Draw forth they weapon-We are beset with thieves”. Pedicurist’s behavior wrought the scene is the perfect example of saturating and undermining marriage and courtship.

Patriotic takes away the whole aspect of “falling in love” from Katherine as he forces her to marry him and her father happily abides, “will you, nil you, I will marry you”. This again makes a charade of marriage. I agree when CoopLila Kahn says “The overt force Patriotic wields over Kate by marrying her against her will in the first place, and then by denying her every wish and comfort, stamping, shouting, reducing her to exhaustion, etc. , is but a farcical representation of the psychological realities of marriage… As the audience would definitely find it funny and is a perfect example of Shakespearean attempts to ridicule the sanctity of marriage. As Robert Hellman demonstrates, the taming is best viewed as farce which “carries out our desire to simplify life by a selective anesthetizing of the whole person; man retains all his energy yet never really gets hurt” and this is shown as the drama is a comedy of mocking the institution of marriage. Another negative outlook against marriage and courtship is when we find of Worthiness’s plans to disguise myself as a “schoolmaster well seen in music to instruct Bianca”.

Licentious also disguises himself by swapping clothes and identities with Traction so that he may “woo” Bianca secretly. This shows courtship to be a mockery as when you court someone, you are opening up and showing the person who you are and that you’ve nothing to hide. Horniness is doing the complete opposite as he isn’t showing who he really is at all. This shows us a very shallow philosophy at work by undermining the whole idea of courtship. Patriotic later uses his forceful and shocking treatment, which again mocks the traditions of marriage, when they arrive to his house in Act IV Scene l.

Expectations of newlyweds are ruined by this as Patriotic starts the real taming and Katherine is traumatized thoroughly because he deprives her of food and lets her have no sleep by keeping her awake all night, “She ate no meat today, nor none shall eat; Last night she slept not, nor tonight she shall not”. Once more it undermines and ridicules the idea of marriage and courting and this is a thesis present throughout the piece. Patriotic takes advantage of Katherine and makes a cocker of her in Act IV Scene V. He says “how bright and goodly shines the moon” and when Katherine objects and declares “The moon?

The sun! It is not moonlight now. ” Patriotic demands that Katherine calls it the moon or they shall go any further. In the latter on the scene Vincent, Patriotic states to Katherine “Hast thou beheld a fresher gentlewoman? ” and straight away Katherine replies and says to Patriotic to make a ridicule of the marriage by controlling her, as he does throughout the piece. The final scene needs great analysis as this is a turning point or the play, Katherine seems like a new woman, due to the speech she gives. Skate’s speech at the end of the play has been the focus of many interpretations.

It is, for obvious reasons, abhorrent to many feminist critics, who take issue with Skate’s recommendation of total subservience to the husband, she says at different points that the man is the woman’s lord, king, governor, life, keeper, head, and sovereign. She also stereotypes women as physically weak and then suggests that they should make their personality mild to match their physique “Why are our bodies soft, and cake, and smooth…… But that our soft conditions and our hearts, Should well agree with our external parts? In my opinion Kate finally breaks and agrees to play along with Pedicurist’s game of make-believe, even though she knows that what Patriotic says isn’t true. The final speech, then, can be seen as an extension of Skate’s newfound ability to “role-play,” or act. This theory is particularly appealing because the entire play is very much interested in the theatricality of everyday life and the affirmative aspects of gender roles. The other marriages, between Lunation & Bianca and The Widow & Horniness, take a different turn than we expected.

Throughout the drama, Bianca always acted as the innocent, obedient and thoughtful women actually is more stubborn than Katherine. I suspect that all she wanted was a guaranteed husband and then she would show her true colors. It can be said that there is an abundance of evidence to say that courtship and marriage are undermined and ridiculed throughout “The Taming of the Shrew’ however it can be said we as a modern generation are quick to Judge. Yes, it is made a mockery of eight through however, at the end of the piece we are presented with a united front between Katherine and Patriotic.


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