The wife of Bath: analisi

Appunto inviato da bettuska

Il prologo e il racconto della donna di Bath (The wife of Bath): analisi del testo e descrizione dei personaggi principali della sesta novella, scritta da Geoffrey Chaucer, della raccolta "The Canterbury Tales" (1 pagine formato doc)


Prologue to the wife of Bath's Tale. Geoffrey Chaucer.

The Wife of Bath begins the prologue to her tale by boasting of her experience in marriage. She has already married five men, and she ignores the idea that this is a reproach to Christian principles. She is adhering only to the principle of being fruitful and multiply. She cites the case of King Solomon, who had multiple wives, and tells that she welcomes the opportunity for her sixth husband. She also points out that Jesus never lays down a law about virginity.
Then she decides to speak about each of her husbands. Three were good and two were young men. The good ones were kind, rich and old. She would withhold sex from them to get the riches they might offer her. She would use guilt and jealousy against them, along with other manipulative techniques.

The Canterbury Tales: riassunto e prologo


The fourth husband she married was young. He was a reveller and had a mistress as well as a wife. He was a match for the Wife of Bath, sharing some similar qualities, but he soon died. The fifth husband was the cruellest to her, since once he struck her so hard on the ear that she lost hearing, because she tore a page from one of his books. He would cite examples that indicated a wife should be submissive, as describes the passage she tore from the book. She complains that the stories that denigrate women are written by monks who have no experience with them, and that the stories would be different if women wrote them. After Jankin struck her, she appeared dead, but when she revived he was so penitent that he ceded all authority in the marriage to her. From that point onward she was kind to him, for he had given her what she truly wanted.

The Canterbury Tales prologue: traduzione


The Wife of Bath is the most fully realized character in the Canterbury Tales. Headstrong, boisterous and opinionated, she wages a struggle against the denigration of women and the taboos against female sexuality. She issues a number of rebuttals against strict religious claims for chastity and monogamy, using Biblical examples to show that the Bible does not condemn all expressions of sexuality, even outside of marriage. She claims that the reason for the bias against women is due to the lack of experience and contact with women of those who write the text. It is this antipathy to intellectual arguments against femininity that causes her to tear the pages from Jankin's book.