Geoffrey Chaucer, an English poet during the middle ages, wrote The Canterbury Tale’s Wife of Bath; he was born from a humble middle-class family and climbed his way up through the aristocracy. The Wife of Bath main protagonist is molded by a sexist culture of her times. My goal with this paper is to shed light on The Wife of Bath’s main character. A story of a smart, strong-willed woman who manipulates her way to financial and personal independence, is she a feminist or a smart and scheming woman?
Chaucer Refutes Chaucer presents women in a light different to the long tradition of anti-feminist literature. In The wife of Bath’s tale, he presents women as grace givers; When the queen chose to show mercy rather than showing the knight to his death. Chaucer’s
In “The Wife of Bath’s Tale” the knight’s punishment for raping a girl is to set out on a year long journey to find out what women desire most. This story is sexist portraying women in a negative light. The tale portrays women as tricksters and seducers.
While the main character of The Wife Of Bath’s Tale began with little respect or understanding of women, after undergoing a long journey and learning valuable lessons, he seemed to better understand women, and give them equal respect. Several events from the story in particular triggered this change in the Knight: his initial punishment, reaction to the old woman’s request, and his decision on their wedding night. The story begins with the Knight stumbling upon a young woman while traveling, and as the text states, “...Spite of all she said, by very force he took her maidenhead,” meaning he raped the woman. Word of his crime swiftly traveled to the king, and he was condemned to be executed. This was later revoked, and the queen sent him on his quest to find what women most desire.
With her provoking clothing and large hips Chaucer portrays the woman in bath as a lover of many. Chaucer describes the woman as a gold digger, a woman that marries for money. Each of the woman's husband's differed greatly in age from her and had plenty of wealth to share. Chaucer uses sexism as a form of humor to describe the woman in bath as lustful and sinful. He says “And knew the remedies for love’s mischances An art in which she knew the oldest of dances, “ ( The prologue 125 )
The portrayal of women in literature over the years has often times denoted roles and capabilities through society. Unlike most, Geoffrey Chaucer has been credited to writing various works exemplifying women by showing their equal powers and potentials. Through what ways does Chaucer depict The Wife of Bath to be a stronghold in society within the Canterbury Tales? The female narration in The Wife of Bath’s Tales firmly sets the main character as strong independent women.
In the Wife of Bath’s, she broke all the stereotypes Medieval society thought a wife is. She tells the people that being married intercourse is part of marriage and God has made privates parts to make generations, not to waste in doing nothing. Being categorized or stereotyped in Medieval society was hard for married women in the Medieval era because often they were portrayed as disloyal, uncontrolled sexual beasts because of the lack of marriage
The Wife of Bath: An Analysis of Her Life and Her Tale The Wife of Bath’s Prologue stays consistent with the facts that experience is better than the societal norms, specifically those instilled by the church leadership. Chaucer uses the Wife of Bath to display the insanity of the church, but through switching and amplifying their view of men and chastity onto the opposite gender. The church doctrine at the time held celibacy in an idolized manner, forgetting the inability for humans to ever reach perfection, or live up to this standard. They also did not hold women in a high regard at all, again this is where Chaucer flips the role, as the Wife of Bath describes her five marriages in her prologue, essentially describing each as a conquest, where the result is her having all control.
Chaucer implies that men should be on equal ground with women by showing the Knight when he had more power than women, when the King had no control over the Knight’s punishment, and when the Knight acknowledges that he should honor women/old women. In the beginning of “The Wife of Bath's Tale”, the Knight was portrayed to have a lot of power, however it occurred only towards women. The Knight saw a maiden one day, “And of that
Throughout her introduction of the tale, and the story itself, we see the Wife of Bath as an experienced, intellectual woman, who despite living in a world of patriarchal power, provides for herself financially, emotionally, and physically. As a feminist icon, she confronts serious social issues that illustrate the subjugation women faced. During her prologue and her tale, it is very clear that the Wife of Bath is proud and not ashamed of her sexuality. She views sex as a good ideal, and argues it, using references from the Bible, that God’s intentions
In the book of Wife of Bath’s Tale, Geoffrey Chaucer shows the role of a woman being weak creatures while men are economically powerful and educated. Women are seen as inheritor of eve and thus causes
In the pardoner's tales, the moral is how greed can destroy people. Whereas the moral in “The Wife of Bath Tale” applies to rape. In “The Pardoner's Tale”, Chaucer explains,“ No longer was it death those fellows sought, For they were so thrilled to see the sight, the gold was so beautiful and bright” (171-174). “And with that poison he could kill his friends. To men in such a state the Devil sends Thoughts of this kind, and has a full permission To lure them on to sorrow and perdition; For this young man was utterly content To kill them both and never to repent” (246-251).
[attention getter]. Geoffrey Chaucer, in his novel The Canterbury Tales, deals with many tales of medieval life and morals. The writing follows a large group of pilgrims who have all been challenged to tell their best tale, one that teaches a valuable lesson, on the journey to Canterbury. Two of the stories told, “The Pardoner’s Tale” and “The Wife of Bath’s Tale”, make their points in very notable ways. The Pardoner tells a story of three men who come to pay for indulging in the sin of greed, while the Wife of Bath recounts a story of questionable morality involving a knight struggling for redemption after breaking his code of honor.
A story that reflects a timeless issue of equality, morals, and lesson on what women really desire. The Wife of Bath by Geoffrey Chaucer is a story in The Canterbury Tales that expresses multiple moral lessons and an exciting dialogue that provides an entertaining story. The two stories that will be examined today are the “Pardoners Tale” and “The Wife of Bath”, after much evaluation I believe that “The Wife of Bath” is the better story. This is the better story because it’s more entertaining and also has more morals with better quality.