"Sigh no more, ladies": marriages of submission in Shakespeare's "The taming of the shrew" and "Much ado about nothing"
LE3 .A278 2000
Master of Arts
English & Theatre Studies
This thesis is a comparative study of marriages of submission in William Shakespeare's 'The Taming of the Shrew' and 'Much Ado About Nothing'. It examines the submissive role in marriage to which loquacious women are confined and their loss of linguistic freedom. It critically analyzes the patriarchal social order in which early modern women are mere commodities or objects of male sexual desire, and the threat that these verbal women pose to the social order. This thesis argues and concludes that 'Much Ado About Nothing ' can be read as a revision of 'The Taming of the Shrew' in regards to its discourse on women and marriage and regarding the playwright's treatment of the characters, particularly Beatrice and Katherina. It compares the process by which both women are tamed and silenced in their transition from witty, free-spirited women to silent, obedient wives.
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