Taming of the shrew critique. Historical Criticism of The Taming of the Shrew 2022-10-24
Taming of the shrew critique Rating:
The Taming of the Shrew, written by William Shakespeare in the late 16th century, is a comedic play that follows the story of Katherine, a strong-willed and fiercely independent woman, and her transformation into a submissive wife through the manipulation and coercion of her husband, Petruchio.
While the play is often lauded for its wit and humor, it has also garnered significant criticism for its depiction of gender roles and relationships. Many have argued that the play promotes misogyny and the idea that men are superior to women, as Petruchio goes to great lengths to "tame" Katherine and make her conform to societal expectations of femininity.
One major issue with the play is the way in which it portrays Katherine's personality before her transformation. She is depicted as a "shrew," a term that was used in Shakespeare's time to refer to a woman who was considered difficult or unpleasant. This characterization of Katherine as a "shrew" is used to justify Petruchio's treatment of her and to make it seem as though he is doing her a favor by "taming" her.
Additionally, the play presents Petruchio's tactics as being effective in transforming Katherine into a submissive wife. He withholds food and sleep from her, publicly humiliates her, and forces her to conform to his will. These tactics are presented as being necessary in order to "tame" Katherine, and the play suggests that this is the only way to have a successful marriage.
Critics have also pointed out that the play's portrayal of gender roles is outdated and does not reflect contemporary values. The idea that a man must dominate and control his wife in order to have a successful marriage is no longer accepted in modern society, and the play's portrayal of such behavior as being necessary and desirable is therefore problematic.
In conclusion, while The Taming of the Shrew may have been entertaining in its time, its portrayal of gender roles and relationships is problematic and does not reflect contemporary values. Its depiction of Katherine's transformation into a submissive wife through manipulation and coercion is unacceptable and promotes misogyny.
Review: The Taming of the Shrew
The marriage, despite appearances, is based on love, mutual respect, and a kind of equality. To approach her father he disguises himself as a teacher, and thus gains permission to teach poetry to Bianca. She makes us believe that she is a horrible shrew, and when her soft side emerges she makes us believe that she could have been sweet all along. Also, he has tamed hawks. Yet the very indirectness of the approach, the fact that it depends on Petruchio's ability to deliberately play the part of lover, indicates the nature of Petruchio's treatment of Kate throughout the play; he plays roles that allow her, as a fellow actress in the pageant of life, to play a complementary role as courted maiden or to misinterpret her role and disrupt the play. I have forgot your name; but sure that part Was aptly fitted and naturally perform'd.
This is interpreted as that Kate refuses to change. The wildness of Kate is associated more specifically with the horse than with the other animals mentioned. Society permits only limited expression. The comedy proper is performed for his entertainment, with a saloon piano player Jonathan Mastro punctuating the proceedings. It's based on the bare bones of Shakespeare's play about Baptista, a rich man with two unmarried daughters. And they are directed to her with undivided singleness of purpose.
Many writers point to Petruchio's energy, imagination, and firmness of purpose as qualities that make him an attractive character. At Petruchio's summons, Kate immediately returns to the table and goes off again to fetch the other women, by force if necessary. Padua has no place for Kate, and therefore rejects her as vile-tempered and laughable. Once one has in mind the fact that the play is about the comedy of life, the parallels between induction and play proper become obvious. Within the framework of marriage as it existed at the time, it comes out in favour of the match based on real knowledge and experience, over against the more fanciful kind of wooing that ignores facts in favour of bookishly conventional attitudes and expressions of feeling. Among others, Baptista is so pleasantly shocked by what his eldest daughter has become that he decides to increase his dowry and thank Petruchio.
Twentieth-century actresses restricted to the authentic text in the wooing scene have often motivated Katherina by making it abundantly obvious that she falls in love with Petruchio at first sight. One drawback is that Miss Taylor appears to be a little long in the tooth to be playing a young, never-married, girl. Petruchio displayed complete trust in Kate in that situation, and she came through for her man. The marriages of the time were very male-dominated. A strong supporting cast helps the film greatly.
If Petruchio is cast as the animal trainer, these lovers are reduced at last to traders at a horse sale. To all of this the erstwhile shrew assents, being now completely converted to her husband's supposal of things, no matter whither it leads. She does not lash out against men because she refuses to accept the role destiny and society allots to women. When Mary Pickford played the part in the 1929 film version of the play the first sound film of any of Shakespeare's plays we are told that 'the spirit of Katherina's famous advice to wives was contradicted with an expressive wink', beginning apparently a new tradition of ironic or ambiguous performances. Also, each of them had something to prove: Petruchio needed to confirm his manhood, while Kate needed to steer her demeanor toward the ladylike side of things.
Of the uproar he produces in the church we hear from Gremio, in a lively description containing the shape of things to come: Tut, she's a lamb, a dove, a fool to him! This states that Petruchio was only marrying for money. Although by her compliance she has born out his hard-worked hypothesis at this point, she makes, shortly after this, a last serious attempt at a showdown, when her temper flares up at his insistence, against her inclination, upon not staying for the wedding feast. There were several points in the play during which she demonstrated her newfound domesticated personality. Bianca's fate is to be settled by an auction, not by a knightly combat. The change Kate underwent was the result of a decision to live differently, free from the usual obstacles encountered as a result of the battle between sexes, and was instantaneous. He's wonderful as Petruchio and she acquits herself well as the shrewish Katharine. There is surely a pun on the sense of title-deeds.
Garner also analyzes the character of Petruchio and the methods he uses to subdue Katherina. As Scene 1 of the Induction begins, Sly suffers public humiliation at the hands of a woman when the Hostess throws him out of her alehouse for disorderly conduct. When Sly comes to, the men tell him that he is, in fact, a lord who has been mad for the past several years. He had in fact found the experience so distasteful that he ended by advocating censorship, questioning 'whether there is any reason to revive a play that seems totally offensive to our age and our society' and recommending that 'it should be put back firmly and squarely on the shelf'. Acted by Richard Burton and Elizabeth Tailor, the film has drawn great attraction. She will be a haggard worth the taming, a good hawk for his hand: I am as peremptory as she proud-minded; And where two raging fires meet together They do consume the thing that feeds their fury. Bianca and the Widow, supposedly sweet and accommodating, offer more than a trace of shrewishness themselves, whereas Katherine, the supposed shrew, is really the obedient and understanding wife.
More recently, Charles Brooks 1960 suggested that Katherina learns to play the role of the obedient wife not only as a way to ensure domestic harmony but also as a means by which she and Petruchio can amuse themselves at the expense of others. Unapt to toil and trouble in the world, But that our soft conditions and our hearts Should well agree with our external parts? The second is the date of publication online or last modification online. New York: Chelsea House Publishers, 1986. Dressed in suitable garb, Petruchio seems on his good behavior at the feast. At least Donyale Werle created a nice wooden set, full of nooks and crannies — at one point Siff throws her skirt over her shoulder to climb a ladder.
She becomes, when released to be herself, the stubborn and willful wife; whereas Kate's apparently brutal treatment releases her into a gracefully obedient and respectful wife. He has nothing of Petruchio's independence, self-reliance and grasp on essentials. A chance to act with excellent dialogue, story and supporting actors. Although Miss Greer possibly romanticises the qualities of Petruchio, Katherina is not really reduced to servitude and no audience imagines that she is. At this point Gremio puts in his claim for the hand of Bianca and Tranio promptly asserts his counterclaim. Part of Petruchio's success in his role as wooer can be attributed to his willingness to allow Kate to play face-saving roles that preserve the pageant of wooing in spite of Kate's inability at the time to play the part of courted maiden. When her father leaves with Bianca and tells Kate she may stay, she gets angry.
The way to a quiet life is Petruchio's way, the play indicates, not Lucentio's or Hortensio's. . Petruchio demonstrates to the other men what his wife has become through his upbringing: such transformations cause natural amazement to all present. Whole sequences such as the wedding ceremony and the final gamble fail to take off, this mainly due to Zeffirelli's timing. One might almost prefer that she simply give in rather than continue to fight from such a psychologically perilous position. The increasing independence of the comic heroines, who all outshine the men they are destined to marry, makes it difficult for us to imagine that their submission will be more than a formality; and in the love scenes of the final plays we are conscious of the complete equality of Florizel and Perdita, of Ferdinand and Miranda. Grumio, Draw forth thy weapon, we are beset with thieves; Rescue thy mistress if thou be a man.