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Comedy of Errors

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The Portrayal of Women in The Comedy of Errors
Through the centuries, women have tried to be equal to men. From their position in the place of work to voting rights, women have struggled to gain equal rights. In Shakespeare’s play The Comedy of Errors, women are very present. Shakespeare presents two important women: Adriana and Luciana. They are each portrayed differently. Adriana represents the feminist point of view and Luciana, the anti-feminist. To begin, Adriana is the most present female on stage. She is weakened by her husband’s dishonesty, which causes her self-doubt. Adriana has the ideology of a feminist. She is a jealous wife. Although she tries to use her female authority, Antipholus of Ephesus prevents these efforts of independence and confidence. He demands from his slave, Dromio E, a rope to use against Adriana when she locked him out: “Thou drunken slave, I sent thee for a rope,

And told thee to what purpose, and what end.” (Shakespeare IV.1.96-97) This shows that men have power over women and could treat them as they wish. When Adriana asks "Why should their liberty than ours be more?" (II.I.10), she is complaining angrily of her husband’s absences from home. She says it feels unfair that there is an unbalanced lack of equity between men and woman. She believes that Antipholus is cheating on her, but doesn’t know that she is dealing with her husband’s twin brother. Also, Adriana's misery over Antipholus' behavior is a product of her view of marriage: "[…] Thyself I call it, being strange to me,

That, undividable, incorporate,
Am better than thy dear self's better part.
Ah, do not tear away thyself from me!
[…] As take from me thyself and not me too. [...]" (II.II.119 -128). Adriana explains that she and her husband are inseparable, unbreakable. She is recalling a time where their love was strong. Adriana's possessiveness result in her husband’s creating lies to cover for his absences. After Adriana locks him out of his home, he takes...

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