The Taming of the Shrew and Bianca Essay

Submitted By zacpicks
Words: 1013
Pages: 5

Zac Adcox
Mrs. Foor
Senior English 6
6 February 2013 Bitches and Hoes The worst time to be a woman was definitely during the time of Shakespeare’s play writing prime. Not only did woman have no rights, but you were either a nice, simple, and quiet woman or a hideous, evil, and wicked wench. Before stirring chaos over the controversial title, think about how different the women are today as compared to 400 years ago. Just take the movie, 10 Things I Hate About you, which is closely modeled after the Shakespeare play Taming of the Shrew, for example. The only difference is that the newer version has way more sex involved in the story. Thus, Shakespeare’s stereotypes are basically the same, besides the fact that our generation of ladies has become somewhat uncontrollably promiscuous. Fortunately for the women, not all innocence has been lost amongst their whole species. To Shakespeare, the innocent woman was also known as the virgin. Today, she is still known as the virgin, she is just much rarer and less sought out for. In the play, Bianca is the virgin that is everyone one wants to be with. Bianca’s innocence is clearly visible do to the fact that her father adores. Baptista (Bianca’s father), explains to his precious daughters suitors:
BAPTISTA. "Gentlemen, importune me no farther, for how I firmly am resolved you know, that is, not to bestow my youngest daughter before I have a husband for the elder. If either of you both love Katherine because I know you well and love you well, leave shall you have to court her at your pleasure." (1. 1. 48-54) Baptista’s clearly strict policy shows how beloved and innocent Bianca really is. Also, all the men after Bianca love her in the first place because of how sweet and delicate she is in comparison to her horrid sister Kate. Bianca is also known as the sweet loveable girl in the movie, 10 Things I Hate About You. In this story she is portrayed as a virgin who contains all the innocence in the world, and all the guys in the high school she goes too are madly in love with her. Bianca’s father, Walter, makes a comment similar to Baptista’s remark to Bianca’s suitors, when she asks to be able to date boys. He explains to her, “Fine you can date. But there’s a rule. You can only start dating when Kat does.” (10 Things, 24:16), which Bianca is not too happy about considering her sister is a brute. Walter is a perfect symbol of Bianca’s innocence because he constantly tries to hide the real world atrocities to her such as “crack whores” and teen pregnancy. These examples also show how the modern day youth, women in general, are surrounded by sex and its consequences. Shakespeare’s idea of a sweet innocent girl was not the only stereotype he created for women. Obviously, not all women are harmless and innocent, especially these days. The famous playwright’s description of the wanton woman still lives on today. Except people more easily recognize her as the bitch. Shakespeare’s example of the wanton woman is Kate in the Taming of the Shrew. All men see how atrocious and horrendous Kate is which makes her very unpopular with suitors. You get a sense of how awful Kate really is when Gremio insults her in a horrible fashion:
GREMIO. I say a devil. Think'st thou, Hortensio, though her father be very rich, any man is so very a fool to be married to hell? (1. 1. 418) , literally comparing her to hell itself. Kate is misunderstood because she is far more obnoxious and aggressive than women were ever at that time. But even Kate, who went against almost every characteristic of a “quiet woman”, has remained a virgin until her wedding day, also despite her age. That is not the case for Kat in 10 Things I Hate About You, who exclaims to Bianca she is so mean and anti-social towards guys is