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Shakespeare as a playwright of Inordinate Heroines - A critical study

Journal: Praxis International Journal of Social Science and Literature (Vol.4, No. 4)

Publication Date:

Authors : ; ;

Page : 7-12

Keywords : Feminism; Shakespearean Drama; literature; Elizabethan; society;

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Female characters demonstrate a significant role in Shakespearean plays. Just as in reality, women ofShakespeare's dramas have been bound to rubrics and resolutions of the patriarchal Elizabethan era. Therefore, it was very common back in Elizabethan England to induce women into marriages inorder to receive power, legacy, dowry or land in exchange.Even though the Queen herself was anunmarried woman, the roles of woman in society were extremely restricted. Single woman hasbeen the property of their fathers and handed over to their future husbands through marriage. In Elizabethan time women were considered as the weaker sex and their sexuality wassupposed mystic. Women of that era were supposed to represent virtues like obedience, silence, sexual chastity, piety and patience. All these virtues, of course, have their meaning in relationship tomen.Men were the breadwinners and women had to be obedient housewives and mothers. However, within this deprived andorganized scope, women have been epitomized in most diverse ways in ShakespeareanDrama. For all that, Shakespeare supports the English Renaissance stereotypes ofgenders, their roles and responsibilities in society; he also puts their representations into question, challenges, and also revises them. Feminist criticism appears to be the fastest-growing and mostwidespread of all recent approaches to Shakespeare.Hence, feminist approaches to Shakespeare and all thosequestions are best understood in the context of feminism itself: the drive to achieve rights andequality for women in social, political and economic life. However, this does not mean that feminismis anti-men; it is more against sexism, humiliation and gender discrimination. Consequently, it is against the beliefs and practices that structure and maintain the subordination and oppression of women.Further, summing up, his heroinesreveal and challenge the cultural determining of gender roles in allsocial institutions like family, work,politics, religion, and, of course, in literature and drama.It tries to expose how, in plays, in novels and otherwriting, patriarchal ideology often stereotypes, distorts, ignores or represses that experiences of the female protagonists whether Viola, Rosalind, Miranda, Lady Macbeth they all represented aspowerful women characters of their time in Shakespearean drama.

Last modified: 2021-06-20 02:58:17