What Is The Inequality In The Wife Of Bath's Tale

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"Feminism is the idea that all sexes should possess the same political, social, and economic rights. However, due to religious acts and social norms that have been established throughout history, men have ended up on a different level above women and seem to be confused by how to make women happy and what women want. In The Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer, the Wife of Bath reveals that women desire superiority. However, through reading the tale, one can interpret that women desire equality. In medieval times, women depend on men in order to survive. Women do not possess their own freedom or power because women are considered “man’s ruin” (Bowden). In “The Wife of Bath’s Tale”, a lusty knight rapes a young maiden and is sent on a yearlong…show more content…
Ironically, the old woman forces the bachelor into marriage after he is saved. One night after a long argument, the wife asks if her husband would prefer her faithful and loving or young and beautiful. Surprisingly, the man says that she should choose what is best for her and that he will be happy with her decision. The husband gives his wife the mastery that he believes women want and submits to her, and the old woman, elated by his answer, transforms into a young, beautiful maiden. The two live the rest of their lives happily married. What truly causes their happiness? The husband is unhappy at first because the dominance his wife possesses is forced, but after the husband gives his wife power, the wife does not keep it but is obedient and the two are happy. This suggests that women really want “a token submission on the part of the husband” (Howard). This token could be presented in many situations, but the greatest idea of submission is man bending down on one knee to propose marriage. This act shows equal respect, submissiveness, compassion, gentleness, and true love, but once the person that is proposed to says yes, the man can rise and give his love the physical “token” of a

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