Much Ado About Nothing Gender Analysis

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Claudia Eves Miss Lake Year 9 English Text Analysis: Much Ado About Nothing How does Shakespeare use language and characters in Much Ado About Nothing to explore issues of societal gender expectations? Discuss this with reference to the play. A play by definition is ‘a dramatic composition or piece; drama’ (according to Dictionary.com), Much Ado About Nothing - an immensely popular comedic play of Shakespeare’s, does not fall short of that description. However, behind the comedy and amusement of Much Ado About Nothing lays the ugly truth about inequality between genders and gender roles throughout the Elizabethan era and society. When observing the concept of honour and the male vision of women depicted in the play, the inequality is prevalent.…show more content…
In the play, the females are commonly referred to as untrustworthy objects, things that are put on the shelf when men become bored of them. In the beginning of the play, Claudio asks Benedick on his personal opinion of Hero, the conversation very quickly turns to the act of buying her and whether she is worthy of Claudio’s hand in marriage. Benedick valued Hero’s beauty and obedience so highly that she was deemed worthy. The fact that men objectify the women makes it clear that the men believe the women have no real voice in any matter; women’s only purpose in life was the serve the man, they are there for the taking and meant to be submissive. This author believes that men in the Elizabethan era viewed women as untrustworthy and unfaithful by nature due to the frequent joking of cheating and cuckolding. Considering that the men believe Don Johns initial accusations against Hero, before they even ‘see’ her in the window, they vowed to shame her when it was proven. None of the men try to defend Hero before that night, because it would make perfect sense for a woman to be unfaithful in their
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