But the answer to the old woman’s question proves that he has learned his lesson after all. With this tale, the Wife of Bath is trying to portray a message that women are strong and determined, which goes along with her belief in the equality of the
In What Women want: the Wife of Bath and the Modern Woman, Gwen Brewer discusses the revolutionary change occurring today in the lives of women. She compares these new gender advancements to The Wife of Bath’s Prologue and Tale when women were valued only for their maternal and sexual characteristics. The Wife of Bath serves as an example for women as she is able to break out of these misogynistic gender roles and do what she wants to do. In this article, Brewer proclaims the Wife of Bath as a feminist character, as can be seen in her appearance and actions. The author begins her article by retelling the prologue and tale of the Wife of Bath.
“The Wife of Bath’s Tale” begins with an unequivocal incident of sexual assault, yet how that assault and the question of consent are interpreted are complicated in light of Suzanne Edwards’ essay, “The Rhetoric of Rape.” Edwards’ essay provides a new historicist lens to provide a context in which the reader can perhaps reconcile the problematic nature of sexual assault that Chaucer inserts into the “loathly lady” narrative. The rhetoric employed by the law in regards to rape complicates Chaucer’s knight’s crime by creating an atmosphere of ambiguity that raises more questions than answers. The disconnect that occurs between the rapist and his victim seems quite abominable on the part of Chaucer and his narrator in that it is quickly forgiven
As he approaches they disappear, leaving just one elderly woman who teaches him what women truly want. The knight returns to answer the Queen, saying “‘My lige lady, generally,’ quod he,/‘Wommen desiren to have sovereynetee/ As wel over hir housbond as hir love, And for to been in maistrie hym above” (ll.1037-1040). This plays into the moral of the story; the Wife of Bath conveys to the listener that a woman’s happiness stems from her superiority over her husband in every respect. Later on in the tale, after the knight is miserably trapped in marriage with the elderly woman from the forest, she asks why he is so downcast, he replies, “Thou art so loothly, and so oold also,/ And therto comen of so lough a kynde” (ll.1100-11001).
The wife of Bath beliefs that women need to be in control which make men think why because men were to be in control. Men were to take care of women, they were looked at as delicate things that had to be watched over. The wife of Bath beliefs that men should find thing the secret to make women happy, money would be for her. Like in the story it 's the queen and women of the court who determines the punishment for King Arthur the Knight for him raping a women. The Wife of Bath beliefs that women should have the control in the relationship because she rebels and is a feminist.
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
Chaucer uses both the tales of the Wife of Bath and the Pardoner to display similar morals which lead to the common theme that the best way to resolve a flaw is the realization and correction of faults. The Wife of Bath’s Tale demonstrates the theme that the recognition of a flaw is the best way to resolve it. The Pardoner narrates a story of a knight who has been punished for his lustful crime to a young woman. In order to be forgiven, he goes on a search to find what a woman most desires. He finds a woman who tells him that “a woman wants the same self sovereignty / over her husband as over her lover” (214-215).
The Wife of Bath believed that women should take mastery over their men (Pg. 914). She had five husbands and thought she knew how to control men. She also believed that experience, not authority by gender, should be respected in society. She also believed that members of the church who could not marry or consummate, knew less of sex and therefore, not as experienced or educated on sexuality as she.
In the fourteen century, men were always the superior, head of the household, the breadwinner, but women were always inferior, they would stay at home, do the house work, cook, and never would have a job. Well, times have changed. Women are reaching an equal status to men in political, social and economic matters It’s part of the idea called Feminism. In many ways the Wife of Bath displays many characteristic of women in the 21st century. Instead of being directed by men, she views herself as an independent person.
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
“Come on, come on! You are pictures out of door, bells in your parlors, wildcats in your kitchens, saints in your injuries, devils being fended, players in your huswifery, and huswives in your beds.” (l.122-125. 2.1) Iago states that women only have two jobs- take care of the home, and give pleasure to their husbands in their beds. The Wife of Bath in Chaucer's, “The Canterbury Tales”, is a successful cloth maker, “At making cloth she had so great a bent she bettered those of Ypres and even of Gent.”
The Wife of Bath states, “You have two choices; which one will you try? To have me old and ugly till I die, but still a loyal, and humble wife that never will displease you all her life, or would you rather I were young and pretty and chance your arm what happens in a city where friends will visit you because of me, yes, and in other places too, maybe. Which would you rather have? The choice is all your own” (395-403).
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.