At around the middle of Kate’s speech, we can understand that she is illustrating that women just want to have love like anybody else and want to be treated fairly and equally. She also clarifies that women do not want love to be put at a price. Further on, Kate is saying that women should be soft and weak. That they should not work or cause trouble in the world. On the same note, Kate then declares that women’s nature should be kind and soft and that their physical appearance should reflect on this. However, I cannot be sure whether Katherina is being sarcastic as this is usually a view made by men and considering that Kate is a happy person, I don’t think she believes this. Kate might just be saying this to please her husband.
The last four lines of Kate’s powerful speech show how she feels or pretends to feel about men in society in Elizabethan times. Katherina could be being sarcastic in those four lines but however, she hides it by appearing sympathetic towards men. Moreover, I believe that the statement from Kate’s last speech “And place your hands below your husbands foot” really illustrates great sympathy towards men. I also think that is a strong metaphoric statement where the women here could be considered “like slaves to men”.
After thorough and close analysis of Katherina final speech, I have come to the conclusion that this powerful speech is a positive portrayal of women. I think this because she clearly informs and explains to the women that they should always obey and respect their husbands no matter what happens. She also gives the impression that they should be “slaves” for their husbands. However, was Kate playing the same game as Petruchio?
I want to conclude by saying that after close analysis of the play, I think that Shakespeare is not nor feminist or male chauvinist, however, I think he is somewhere in between. I think this because in some parts of the play he was with and sometimes against the mistreatment of women. For example, in Act 1 Scene 1, Lucentio calls Baptista a “cruel father” for not letting Bianca marry. This is one example that shows Shakespeare is against the mistreatment of women.
This is because Lucentio doesn’t agree with the way Baptista wants his daughters to be married as Baptista declares that Bianca will only get married when her elder sister gets married. However, one example showing Shakespeare with the mistreatment of women would be in Act 1 Scene 2, Petruchio explains that he’s only in Padua to find a wealthy wife. He doesn’t care what she’s like, or who she is, as long as she has money. This shows us that men only wanted women for their wealth but not for their personality. This also gives us the impression that when men marry a wealthy women they would not really take care of her, they would only care about the money. This also hints out that women were treated as slaves.