A women’s role has changed excessively from Medieval times to Shakespearean times, and to Modern time. Women went from not being recognized to having the greatest impact in our society today. Many years ago, women’s contribution to society was limited and controlled by men. Women are now standing tall and are playing a major role in many important areas, like raising kids, being the pillar and holding the family up. Women’s role has changed very quickly and they have parts in areas such as politics, professional jobs, business, and law. Back in the day, they were never allowed to do anything or have a opinion, but now they are above everyone.
Few women worked in medieval times, some did the tasks of writing, cooking/baking, spinning and weaving, some also worked alongside their husbands in the fields, they did not gain any recognition for this work because they were not treated the same as men. Women received much less pay than men and often had to have several jobs to earn the same wage as men. The role of women in medieval times was to care for their children and husband and look after the home. The role of a wife was very important and women were expected to tend to their husband’s needs at all times, the husband, usually went out to work in order to earn the money needed to support the family. The husband had control over everything. This is what happened in The Taming of the Shrew, Katherina was a untamed shrew, and could out-talk, out-fight anyone. She is very and is particularly against anyone who tries to marry her, and she did not want anything to do with it. Especially in the beginning of the play, she is so stubborn and throughout the play she changes in some parts. Kate allows Petruchio to please her, thereby pleasing herself. Instead of trying to go against him, she decides to go with it. As we see midway through the play, Petruchio decides to try and starve her until she cracks down, she realizes that in order not to die from this sort of thing, she better allow him to try and please her, instead of fighting. We see that really she isn’t “Tamed” in my opinion, she is more “changed” or “matured.”
In Shakespearean times, The point that Shakespeare is trying to make is that all women should basically be a puppet to their husband. The husband controls every little thing the wife does. If the wife does not obey what the husband says, there needs to be something done. How Katherine is “untamed” and someone needs to tame her so she become the normal stereotypical women and be forced to marry. In The Taming of the Shrew, the women are looked at as objects, not humans. It was such a horrid way of taming Katherina, starving her, taking away her clothes, not allowing her to say what she thinks and feels. Since Katherine was a shrew and was stubborn, which was not the typical women, hence why she needed to be tamed because it was not sticking to the book how women should act and treat their husband. In The Taming of the Shrew, Shakespeare wrote in relating it to the characters that women are meant to be had. One of the main characters, Bianca, was bet on by many men to see who could win her over. It is treating women like objects and showing that love was not involved. Shakespeare describes the payment of wives when Hortensio says, “Yea, and to marry her, if her dowry please” (1, 2, 184). This is stating that he will marry her if the amount of money he offers is enough for her father to approve of their marriage. The marriages in the play that are being presented are not love. There are plans, and lies mixed in, and that is not what marriage is, or suppose to be. What Petruchio felt was pride in succeeding, had nothing to do with love. Another instance would be was when Lucentio wins Bianca’s heart, but he is given permission to marry her only after he is able to convince Baptista that he is rich. If Hortensio offered more money, he would have married Bianca, regardless of whether she loved Lucentio. The men in this story do not care about the women’s feelings and they only care about what they will get out of the marriage.
Now in Modern time, Women’s Roles are tremendously different, they are recognized for the achievement they accomplish and are making a big impact in today’s world. According to the U.S. News ; World Report, “In America, women are almost half of the labor force and make a good amount of money, although not quite what men bring home. They increasingly hold leadership positions, have equal rights to men in most things and are more than capable of leading fully independent lives.” (U.S. News ; World Report)