Candida is the eponymous protagonist of Shaw's comic play Candida. She is an illustration of a character type intimately connected with Shaw's theories of gender. Essentially, the play argues that women are by nature strong and therefore are attracted to weaker men as that allows them to exercise dominance in a patriarchal society which offers little scope for female power outside the family environment. Over the long term, Shaw thinks that this should be changed by increasing gender equality. In this play, however, Shaw uses the character of Candida to illustrate the strength of women. Although the men in the play appear to demonstrate conventional male "strength" in the sense of success in business, the church, and the arts, it is Candida's strength and that of women in general who are the power behind this success.
Candida herself is an anti-romantic character who sees marriage as grounded in partnership and support, not in momentary passion. She is intelligent and competent and has a level of wisdom and insight that enables her to make good choices. She has few social prejudices and is equally competent at cooking and managing her husband. She is fundamentally kind and clever and is an example of a true partner in a relationship. She is also a person who has a great amount of practical common sense.