Wife of Bath Essay

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A Tale through the Eyes of the Wife of Bath
The Wife of Bath uses reasoning and logic to justify that it should not be looked down upon for a woman to have multiple marriages throughout her lifetime. Allison, the Wife of Bath, argues that God “bade us all to wax and multiply” (277). Essentially, Allison is claiming that God is the controller of the universe and by marrying multiple men she is simply following his instruction. In addition, the Wife of Bath disputes that there is a double standard about having several marriages. She reasons that while women are looked down upon for having multiple marriages, men throughout history have often married many women and are not shamed. For example, she envies King Solomon for the number of women he had slept with and married. Alison references a counter- point that the Apostle made in which he recommends that women maintain their virginity. She makes the logical point that if all women were abstinent, there would be no one to create more virgins. Her point is made using deductive reasoning because her logic is derived from the fact that without reproduction, the population would die out. Alison claims that St. Paul advocated virginity, but he did not make it an obligation. In addition, The Wife of Bath discusses that God would not have molded the female and male genitals to be so perfectly fit for one another if they were not meant to be used in harmony. She is reasoning that God gave men and women genitals to use them, and doing so should be endorsed rather than disgraced. The counter- argument to her theory is that nuns and priests commonly argue that genitals are for business rather than pleasure. She then states that it is stated “in books: ‘A man must yield his wife her debt’” (280). This quote portrays that it is a man’s duty to satisfy his woman in bed. The Wife of Bath uses this quote to prove that using genitals should not be used strictly for “the purguration of urine” and “to know a male from a female” (279)....
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