Women In Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing And Othello

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In the 1500-1600s women were not treated the same as men. Shakespeare portrays women a certain way to break the mold of what women were supposed to be. Women are seen standing up for themselves and being bold which was not supposed to happen. Even though Shakespeare was a bit of a revolutionary with the idea of women, the other characters in his plays still view women much like real people in his time. Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing and Othello are similar in how women are viewed by other characters. By examining other characters objectifying women, men disrespecting women, and the social stigma around women’s actions it proves that women are treated fairly similar and poorly. First, other characters are seen objectifying women in these plays. Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing portrays Hero as a prize to be won. Bennedick goes as far to ask Claudio, “Would you buy her, that you enquire after her?” clearly talking about hero as an object they can purchase (I.i.162). The whole town thinks of Hero as the the perfect woman and they all talk about how much of a prize she would be. In Othello Desdemona is also treated much like an object. In the beginning she was her father’s, Brabantio’s, property. Later she is viewed as Othello’s property, he implies that she is a commodity to be guarded and transported. Othello says to her, “Come, my dear love/ the purchase was made the fruits are to ensue,” this bluntly says that their marriage was a purchase and now

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