April 30, 2015
Kates Speech was a very powerful and demanding statement to all women. It declared
that women should be beneath men and obey and support them at all times. Ironically to the previous way Kate had held herself in the play, her speech takes a lunging start, by saying:
fie, unknit that threatening unkind brow, And dart not scornful glances from those eyes, To wound thy lord, thy king, thy governor, It blots thy beauty as frosts do bite the meads, Confound thy fame as whirlwinds shake fair buds” My interpretation of this piece is that Kate starts her speech by claiming that all women need to stop making a rude and cruel attitude and appearance, and to stop looking scornfully at your husband. This hurts him and makes you look ugly and ruins your character. She continues to say in her speech,
“And in no sense is meet or amiable, A woman moved is like a fountain troubled, Muddy Illseeming, thick, bereft of beauty, And while it is so, nonso dry or thirsty Will design to sip or touch one drop of it.”
Here she is saying that the attitude that the women have is not right or proper to go against your husband. An angry woman is gross, unpleasant, and foul with no beauty. Even if you need her most, you will not want to touch her. Kate goes on by stating,
“ Thy husband is thy lord, thy life, thy keeper, Thy head, thy sovereign; one that cares for thee, And for thy maintenance; commits his body to painful labour both by sea and land, To watch the night in storms, the day in cold,” Kate is claiming that a woman’s husband is everything. He cares for you, and gives his body up as he works in all
conditions to keep vigil through everything. She then goes on to preach to the woman how they stay at home, safe and sound while your husband requests nothing besides love, loyalty, and good looks from you. This is a small pay compared to what he deserves. Kate is ashamed at women, and how they want to be powerful and rude. She says that this is not right, they are the lesser of the two sexes and should be as gentle, quiet, and faint hearted as they look. She finishes her rant, by attempting to pull the women together, saying,
“Come, come, you forward and unable worms, My mind hath been as big as one of yours, My heart as great, my reason haply more… Vail your stomachs, for it is no boot, And place your hands below your husband’s foot, in token of which duty, if he please, My hand is ready, May it do him ease.” She is calling forth all women to explain how she used to be just like them, constantly fighting and showing disrespect.
But she realizes that this is not the right way to go. It is better to obey and respect your man, and serve them. She tells women to bow down and comfort your husband, since this is a small token to what he deserves. Kate’s speech was very powerful and effective, because no one expected to hear such a claim coming from her on how wrong it is to disrespect your man.
I think Kate’s reason behind this speech could be taken in a big variety of aspects. Some
people may think that Kate was whipped into shape, and had finally acted accordingly to expected behavior of that…