Canterbury Tales Research Paper

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Throughout the ages there have been many ways people have brought about reform in a society. Some sign petitions and go on peace strikes; others go on a different route and use violence. Take Martin Luther King Jr. for example, he wanted equality for all blacks in America and got this through peaceful disobedience. Rosa Parks, Gandhi, and so many others use peaceful ways of bringing reform. Malcom X took that more violent approach. The French Revolution, reform was brought about by beheadings and killing. There is another sort of approach to reformation; that’s how Geoffrey Chaucer tried. He wrote Canterbury Tales and made up stories using satire to show the hypocritical ways of the church, gender relationships, and the issues of class status.…show more content…
In lines 212-219 of the General Prologue, Chaucer says, “There was a Friar, a wanton one and merry… He’d fixed up many a marriage, giving each of his young women what he could afford her. He was a noble pillar to his order. Highly beloved and intimate was he.” Chaucer says this “holy” Friar would get these young girls pregnant and get them married, but he was a holy man and a “pillar” in the church. Chaucer’s use of satire is quite amusing actually. Of course everyone knows that a Friar is supposed to be a role model for the rest of the church yet he is out there hanky-pankying with these young women and then just getting them married so it doesn’t look like it is his child. He also would hear peoples confessions and then require a payment of money to pardon them of their sins! What a great Friar haha! Chaucer also uses the story of the Pardoner to criticize the church of its hypocritical…show more content…
Since we don’t have the Prologue there are a couple things I’ll have to summarize. The Wife of Bath says that woman are smarter than men and that they can almost talk men out of anything including the Credit Card. She also says that women are great at manipulation and that they can manipulate men into anything and that women can get men to do anything for them. She then goes on to tell a story about a knight that rapes a young woman and goes to court for it and is going to be beheaded if he can’t find the answer to one question. What is it that all women want? Finally an old women finally tells him and he’s saved but has to marry her. The answer to that question is, “My liege and lady, in general, a woman wants the self-same sovereignty over her husband as over her lover, and master him; he must not be above her.” (Wife of Bath Prologue Lines 183-187) He says this and all the women in the court nod and agree with him. It’s very interesting that he would say this as the King is sitting right next to the

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