Who contradicts the Wife of Bath in her discourse on marriage?

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The Pardoner, unsurprisingly, is the one who takes issue with the Wife of Bath's feminist discourse.

Why, one may ask, do I say "unsurprisingly"? The Pardoner's own nature and character are, like anything in literature, open to interpretation. Teachers and critics often see him as an exemplar of both sinfulness...

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The Pardoner, unsurprisingly, is the one who takes issue with the Wife of Bath's feminist discourse.

Why, one may ask, do I say "unsurprisingly"? The Pardoner's own nature and character are, like anything in literature, open to interpretation. Teachers and critics often see him as an exemplar of both sinfulness and, paradoxically, perfection. Those whose business was the "selling of indulgences" were usually considered mercenary and unsavory people. Yet the tale told by the Pardoner after he completes his sermon of a prologue is often regarded as the most beautiful and artistically perfect section of The Canterbury Tales. The stark and frightening story of the three men coming to grief through their own greed, in the midst of a plague-time all too familiar to Chaucer's readers, is a warning not only against greed but against any type of sin. One might consider all the things Chaucer reveals to us about the Pardoner throughout the Tales, and ask why he, of all the travelers in the group, should take such exception to the frank and pleasure-loving tone of the Wife of Bath. But perhaps the most remarkable thing in the Tales overall is that Chaucer shows us a woman who stands up so forcefully for women's rights, nearly 600 years before the modern feminist movement of our own time.

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