Presentation on theme: "Today in Literature Land you will need… Y our journals A writing utensil Your brains Your Chaucer Packet Some creative interpretation."— Presentation transcript:
Today in Literature Land you will need… Y our journals A writing utensil Your brains Your Chaucer Packet Some creative interpretation
The Wife of Bath Do NOW: In your journals… List any ideas, concepts, or images that may come to your mind when you read “The Wife of Bath” Write down any guesses that you may have about who this character might be/what she may be like Next, imagine what she might look like. Draw a picture of her that comes to mind based off of her title
Gimme some of that context… Pop Quiz… What have we established so far about women’s social standings on the Feudal System scale? What is Chaucer’s attitude towards religion? To really understand the SATIRIC NORM that Chaucer is trying to create through the Wife of Bath…. Let’s dig a little deeper…
As we read the article… Interactively read! Highlight Circle Underline Annotate Look for answers the questions on the following slide and take note of them in your journals!
Women in the Middle Ages: ANALYSIS Women and religion: What was the dominant religion of the time? How much power did the Church have in the societal system of the Middle Ages? Why do you think that this is important? What were the effects of women’s identities being so closely tied to a scriptural context? The way they were viewed by man… Women and family What were the most common roles for a woman in the family? Women and rights What were women’s rights as an individual/person in society? Women and character What were the stereotypes that revolved around women’s characters of the time? What conjectures/assumptions can we make about Chaucer’s character of the Wife of Bath prior to reading her mini portrait based off of this article?
Thinks to Think Now that we have a little bit of a deeper understanding of the outlook on women during this time, let’s keep this in mind as we read about the Wife of Bath and analyze her character portrait. Always be thinking….”what is Chaucer REALLY saying about her?” CHARACTERIZATION! (direct + indirect)
The Wife of Bath So….in modern day English, PLEASE?! Brief recap the synopsis of the portrait? What happened in it?
Characterization Part 1: Women and SEX
Let’s take it from the top… TPCASTT TITLE! (Naming the Baby) WHY did Chaucer have the wife come from a city called BATH? Why not some other name? What is the significance? What connotations do you associate with BATH?
The City of Bath “Founded by the Romans as a thermal spa, Bath became an important centre of the wool industry in the Middle Ages.”
Baths in the Bible The Church was a MAJOR power during the Middle Ages The Church’s view defined the way people were perceived…including WOMEN Chaucer had a very strong opinion on the Church (especially as viewed in some of his character portraits already) King David and Bathsheba Rooftop bathing is the new thing! David was “seduced” by Bathsheba Bathsheba represents what about females?
The Wife of Bath & Bathsheba Prelude to the Wife’s Prologue: Wife of Bath argues against St. Jerome, author of misogynistic text: St Jerome was 4 th -century bishop who argued for celibacy of the priesthood on the basis of the wickedness of women. Here is a quote from his “Letter to Eustochian”: David was a man after God's own heart, and his lips had often sung of the Holy One, the future Christ; and yet as he walked upon his housetop he was fascinated by Bathsheba's nudity, and added murder to adultery
Characterization Part 2: Women and Fashion …It’s all about the shoes, really!
Coverchiefs Chaucer provides us with the knowledge that the Wife is a very skilled cloth-maker, one whose products surpass even those of the most famous cloth-makers of Belgium. We would expect that such a woman would be in the possession of fine quality cloth, herself. It is fitting, then, that the Wife's most distinguishing garment piece is her elaborate headdress, which we are told must weigh ten pounds. This statement, alone, requires us to pay special attention to the wife's coverchiefs. Rather than simply wearing a headdress, the Wife of Bath wears one in such a way that it advertises her, suggesting that the Wife wishes to call attention to herself. In this way, the coverchief reveals the wife's prideful nature. It also illuminates that her status is elevated by way of her skill for cloth-making, which in turn, ensures her economic prosperity.
Scarlet Hosen When venturing to church on Sunday's the Wife pairs her elaborate coverchiefs with a pair of scarlet hosen. It is very well known that in medieval times, red hosen were strongly associated with the nobility. They were also sometimes worn by folk of lower status in the hopes of feigning their social rank. The Wife of Bath is not truly a member of the nobility by birth, but her income allows her to dress as a one of the upper class. Often the mistake is made that her hosen are red in color, but it is crucial to interpretation that they are specified as being scarlet. Scarlet refers to "escarlate," a particular kind of woolen fabric which was exceedingly expensive and of very high quality. Thus, scarlet refers less to the color than the fabric which the hosen were made out of. The process to produce this material was elaborate, involving many cycles of the fabric being napped and shorn. The end result was fabric which was extremely silky. Only cloths which went through this specific process were considered scarlet, making it very costly to obtain. Scarlet cloth could then be died any color, though red dye was commonly used. The superiority of the Wife's hosen are further articulated with the detail that they are "yteyd"straight, meaning that the back seam was sewn straight (Hodges). Taken together, the Wife's elaborate coverchiefs, scarlet hosen, and the new shoes she pairs them with, are a proclamation of this pilgrim's wealth and pride.
Wimple and Hat The hat that the Wife of Bath wears contrasts greatly with her coverchiefs. Her broad hat could possibly be a peasant sun hat, or a standard pilgrim hat. Either one would be practical for a pilgrimage, as they would serve protective purposes (Hodges). It is not surprising that the Wife would possess the appropriate garments for a pilgrimage, as Chaucer informs us that she often ventures on such journeys, making her a seasoned traveler. The fact that she is "ywympled wel" further emphasizes the Wife's experienced relationship to travelling. Wimples were not in high fashion in the 1380's. Rather, they were commonly worn at the time by elderly women, widows, or nuns (Hodges). As her Sunday attire has made evident, the Wife of Bath is fully informed on fashions of the time. She is capable of dressing herself in lavish displays of cloth. Yet she chooses to wear the wimple because of its practicality. A wimple would have successfully protected her from the dust of the road.
Foot Mantle and Spurs Foot-mantle Foot-mantles were a kind of outer garment which tied at one's hips, covering the woman's gown. Foot-mantles were associated with the lower class, as only laborers would have the need of of such an item to protect their gown from becoming soiled by their work (Hodges). The Wife's foot-mantle would have successfully ensured that her gown stayed clean while on pilgrimage. However, they do not boast of her wealth in the same way that, for instance, her scarlet hosen do. They appear to be vulgar in nature in comparison. Spurs The Wife of Bath's pilgrimage outfit is completed with the detail that on her feet are a "paire of spores sharpe." These, like the other elements of her pilgrimage attire, are pragmatic in nature. It has been suggested that, combined with her foot-mantle and hat, the Wife of Bath is attempting to portray herself as a pseudo-knight (Hodges). She is undoubtedly a seasoned traveller, well aware of the garments necessitated by a pilgrimage.
To sum it up! While the two descriptions of the Wife of Bath appear initially to portray two very different women, they are in fact united in their characterization of this pilgrim. The coverchiefs, scarlet hosen, and new shoes that the Wife of Bath wears on Sundays loudly proclaim her sense of self-importance, and the economic prosperity she enjoys because of her successful cloth-making business. The broad hat, wimple, foot-mantle and spurs state a similar truth, but in a much less obvious way. Here is a woman so confident in herself, so secured by her wealth, that she may sojourn on numerous pilgrimages. She wears humble, practical clothing because she has been on so many pilgrimages, that she is knowledgeable about how best to clothe oneself for them. In this way, her pilgrimage attire bespeaks her cosmopolitan nature, which corroborates with her Sunday clothing.
Sooo….Chaucer is saying…? Write a CLAIMS PARAGRAPH in which you identify what the SATIRIC NORM is that Chaucer is revealing in his portrait of the Wife of Bath. You must have a well-developed argument in which you have linear reasoning that is supported with a minimum of two textual references from the literary text and one textual reference from the informational article. Min 10 sentences. Organize your claim according to the following outline: State your claim for authorial intention in which you identify the satirical norm that the Wife of Bath represents Provide thorough context to build the foundation for your argument Instill 3 direct quotes to support your claim Pull your findings together with a fresh, final point