Most women during the early middle ages were not treated properly. They were treated as housekeepers ready to serve every single one of their husband’s needs. According to society women who were not submissive to their husband where all evil. These ideas influenced many of the stories written during the early middle ages; stories such as, Beowulf, Marie de France’s Lanval, Sir Gawain and the Green Knight and The Wife of Bath. In all of these stories women were given a negative image because of the standards set for women by society. Women were not respected and often thought of sex objects that are there to make great men fall; this becomes very evident in the literature written during this time. In Beowulf, Grendel’s mother a monster, who is given the qualities of a women and represents women who are not submissive to their husbands. “Grendel’s mother, monstrous hell bride, brooded on her wrongs.”(Beowulf, page 56, lines 58, 59). In this quote Grendel’s mother is described as “monstrous” or in other words evil. She is portrayed as a crazy monster who has no control over her own actions. Since she does not have a man to control her she is portrayed as ruthless and wild. She is given a bad image because she does meet the standard society put for her; she does not have a husband. According to the article “The Social Centrality …show more content…
If they acted differently then what men wanted them they were considered evil. If they sought justice they were evil. If they gave into their earthly desire they were evil. If they had control over their own life and didn’t let a man rule them they were evil. Women in literature were given a negative image because a society ruled by men decided who they should be and they just complied with their standards. By complying with their standards they lost their liberty, and that is why the women who didn’t comply were frowned
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Grendel's self image changes throughout the story because the effect that some characters that they take upon Grendel’s personality. Grendel’s mother has had an effect on him through the story, he's had a soft spot when it comes to his own mother. For example, “ Of all the creatures i knew, in those days only my mother really looked at me” (Gardner 17). Grendel is hideous, no one really pays attention to him. He's too ugly too look at, people get scared when they see him because of the way he looks.
Philosophical symbolism in Grendel In the novel Grendel the shaper and the dragon both talk about life. The Shaper has a good view point of life and the dragon has a bad view point of life. The Shaper talks about what the universe and world around us has to offer through his stories.
Monsters take on easy prey and heroes have the strength to defeat the monster. This can be seen in Grendel and Beowulf's actions. Grendel preys on the sleeping soldiers. He encounters Beowulf and is surprised by Beowulf's strength and how Beowulf was quick to strike back. Grendel was mortally wounded by Beowulf and knew he was going to die.
Grendel’s self image changes throughout the story because the effect of some characters that is taken upon Grendel’s personality. Grendel’s mother had an effect on him through the story he had a soft spot when it came to his mother. For example, “ of all the creatures i knew, in those days only my mother really looked at me.” (Gardner 17). Grendel is hideous, no one really pays attention to him.
In Grendel there is many different main themes in the story. They all share their own important part on how Grendel is view by the reader and the people in the story. Most of the main themes make you feel more sympathetic with Grendel; than you did in Beowulf. One of the main themes is humans and monsters. At one part of the story Grendel overhears the harper talking about Grendel and goes into the mead-hall.
Grendel’s story is not only from his perspective, but it also starts far before Beowulf enters the picture. Grendel does not even know of man’s existence before he encountered Hrothgar whom he starts to fear when he says “I knew I was dealing with no dull mechanical bull but with thinking creatures, pattern makers. The most dangerous things I’d ever met” (pg 27). His first encounter with these men left him wanting more. He spent most nights watching them in the shadows, trying to make sense of their actions.
Throughout the novel Grendel by John Gardner, Grendel comes across as a ruthless monster who takes pride in murdering others. His actions give the impression that he is an evil figure, but in hindsight he is not as evil as he appears to be. Grendel is not evil as he attempts to make peace and his actions are no different from the actions of others. Furthermore, the author makes the readers feel sympathy for Grendel because Grendel lives a lonely life and is consistently treated poorly. His lack of social relations and his past encounters lead him to resent others.
He is portrayed in the poem as a horrendous beast with human characteristics, but looking closer to the text, he is a human out-casted and raised to be a monster. Although Grendel is written as a monstrous villain who kills with no remorse, he is actually a complex human with a repressed anger exploding in bursts. Grendel is often described in a negative way. He is reffered to as a demon in the text “from Beowulf”
This changed view of women came about due to progressive technology, little knowledge on women, and keeping them from freedom. Due to technology, women weren’t as needed to work with their husbands out in the fields, so their roles evolved to domestic chores. These domestic chores in turn kept the men from knowing about women's jobs, such as caring for the children, creating an atmosphere of mystery around them. The fact that women were always so close to childbirth and medicine for the family also helped to create the perception of magic, leading to the Salem Witch Trials.
Throughout Old English Literature, women were seen as evil. Like in Beowulf where the woman with the most power was a monstrous sea creature who destroyed things. Or in Lanval and Sir Gawain and the Green Knight where women were dishonest and corrupted men, or like in The Wife of Bath where women manipulated men to get what they wanted; owned them in a way. In old English texts women are seen as an evil force; a force of destruction, corruption and cunning.
Beowulf and “The Wife of Bath’s Tale” are both narratives in which gender acts as an important theme within their individual communities; both have underlying meanings when it comes to defining what the role men and women in a good community should be. Or in other words, both stories paint a vivid picture of the role of women during the medieval time period, by suggesting that one gender had more power over another. However, these two narratives take alternative paths when expressing their views; Beowulf conveys its message through what is missing, while “The Wife of Bath’s Tale” incorporates satire and uses explicit narrative when telling the experience of a woman that is highly different from other women in her time. Furthermore, another difference that is appealing to the reader’s eyes, besides the way the two narratives reflect to women’s role in medieval times, is that men become the hero in Beowulf, while “the wife”, so a woman, becomes the authority figure in the story of “The Wife of Bath’s Tale.” I want to first introduce the two main differences between the two narratives and then I will explain how regardless of the differences, both of these narratives’ main goal is to show that women had less power and a good community back that time was male dominated.
Grendel is classified as a monster due to his outsider status of being an outcast, unreligious, and dishonorable, which establishes him as the antithesis of Anglo Saxon culture. As an outcast of society, Grendel represents the idea that in Anglo Saxon culture unity and cooperation is what holds society together. In a world classified by kinship and strong family lineage, Grendel is “conceived by a pair of those monsters born of Cain, murderous creatures banished by God” (Heaney 22). In a society focused upon blood lineage and strong family ties, to be related to a “monster“ in any form is something sinful, and cause enough for complete hatred.
Anglo-Saxons believed males were meant to be prime examples of masculinity, while females quietly remained in the background. It is odd then, that the author of Beowulf would create a female character as powerful and masculine as Grendel’s mother. The author wouldn’t include a female like her without a point to prove about masculinity and femininity. The goal of the author was to prove that no matter how masculine a female may be, she is ultimately lacking the one crucial characteristic in order to be successful in battle. Beowulf is considered to be the manliest of all men; this requires him to have a penis, the one trait that Grendel’s mother does not possess.
In the book Grendel he seems to change throughout the book. At the beginning of the story Grendel is sensitive , immature and very lonely. Giving a feeling of sympathy . That all changes when Grendel talks to The Dragon. When Grendel first meet The Dragon he was afraid of it. He was so terrified to ask him questions.
Stereotypes of Women in The Canterbury Tales Stereotypes of women have not changed throughout the years of history. Throughout the Canterbury Tales, Chaucer portrays women through negative stereotypes. Women are portrayed as selfish, lustful and immoral. In the Wife of Bath’s Prologue women are portrayed as selfish.