The Taming of the Shrew Questions and Answers
by William Shakespeare

The Taming of the Shrew book cover
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How do 10 Things I Hate About You and The Taming of the Shrew explore gender in relation to their contexts?

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The Taming of the Shrew is set in Padua, Italy, during the Renaissance. On the heels of the medieval time period, which was marked by the rise and fall of feudalism, the Black Plague, and the extreme corruption of the Catholic Church, the Renaissance in Europe showed a dramatic shift in art, music, and literature. However, gender roles and stereotypes from medieval times carried over into the Renaissance. Women were often treated as property, first belonging to their fathers and then to their husbands. They were expected to be mild-mannered and agreeable, to tend to their houses and children, and to serve their husbands to their utmost capacity. Men were valued more than women and had much more social and economic power than their female counterparts.

In The Taming of the Shrew, we see gender explored for both male and female characters. The major male characters are the decision-makers in the play. Baptista, father of Katherine and Bianca, is the ultimate decision-maker when it comes to...

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