Denaturalizing shakespeare : a feminist appraisal of Antony and Cleopatra and taming of the shrew
AuthorChowdhury, Rukhsana Rahim
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CitationChowdhury, R. R. (2010). Denaturalizing shakespeare : a feminist appraisal of Antony and Cleopatra and taming of the shrew. BRAC University Journal , Special Issue(01), 22–27.
This article argues that despite reflecting the age-old man-made ideas about race, gender, female sexuality and power, Shakespeare‟s plays suggest themselves to be at odds with patriarchal gender assumptions. The chosen protagonists, Cleopatra and Katherine do not exhibit the traditionally expected code of female behaviour. Both of them are strong women who dare to defy the existing norms and stand out prominently in their own spheres. As a result they have to suffer a reputation and are called names by the male characters. But despite all this, it is to Shakespeare‟s credit that he shows their intellectual superiority and position of power in the plays. This paper aims to explore the extent to which Shakespeare shared the gender assumptions of his own times and the ways in which his plays give a different perspective to these values and principles. An attempt will be made to examine how gender based societal norms and values have been denaturalized by a proto-feminist Shakespeare.