English II H
21 January 2013
The Belittling of Women The movie Shakespeare In Love accurately portrays how some women lived and were treated in the Elizabethan Era. John Madden, the producer, shows the women as inferior to men due to their emotions and weaknesses. These women are not allowed jobs other than bearing children or being housewives. John Madden also shows women as a bond to tie two families together as one. They are forced into premeditated marriages with men they do not love. The social standards for most women of high nobility were to wear large corseted dresses and apply pallid makeup (History of Elizabethan Women). These women were not allowed a say in anything. They had to follow what the male said; however, if they did not, they would have received a harsh punishment (Elizabethan Women). Therefore the majority of these women would learn to obey quickly. In the Elizabethan Era the upper class women are not permitted to work because they were considered not as strong, or as deft as men(Elizabethan Women). For example, in the movie Shakespeare In Love, women were not permitted to be actresses because it was illegal and extremely inappropriate for a woman to be seen on stage. Viola de Lesseps loved poetry; therefore, she auditioned for Shakespeare’s play dressed as a boy. She went against the advice of her maid and later got caught by the stage master. In the film, she defied the queen’s law but the queen overruled her mistake because of the bet the queen had with Lord Wessex. During the Elizabethan Era there were a plethora of family alliances formed by arranged marriages. In the film, Shakespeare In Love, Viola de Lesseps was coerced into a marriage with Lord Wessex at a very inopportune time. She was in love with Will Shakespeare, but the majority of women in this era were not allowed a say in these affairs (History of Elizabethan Women). These women suppressed their emotions for the man they loved. She was obliged
Cited: "History of Elizabethan Women." Women Roles Elizabethan Society. N.p., n.d. Web. 2 Jan. 2013. "Elizabethan Women." Elizabethan Women. N.p., n.d. Web. 21 Jan. 2013.