Wife of Bath Canterbury Tales Geoffrey Chaucer Warm Up • When you have a disagreement with someone how do you resolve the issue? Explain using an example, 2-4 sentences. Background Notes: Wife of Bath • The Wife of Bath’s Tale revolves around an argument about what women want. • The story covers topics such as: -What it is like to have mastery over someone else. -What are the benefits of submitting oneself to the superior arguments of another. Building Background • Wife of Bath had 5 husbands. • During Middle Ages, a woman who had property found it difficult to remain single. • She was successful in “governing” her husbands. • She had a good education, rare for a woman. • Most women only learned the Bible and how to take care of the house. Activity • Take a poll of at least ten people, to answer the following question: • What do women want? • Figure out what are the top three responses. Warm Up • Yesterday we discussed “what women want”. • What do men want? Write down 2-4 things. Setting Purpose • It is set in the shadowy margin between pagan and Christian worlds. • When you are reading, try and figure out which world each of the events belong . Literary Element: HUMOR • Humor: the quality of a literary work that makes characters and their situations seem funny, amusing or ludicrous. • Humor: -ridicules human failings. -reveals irony in many situations. -ranges from puns, word play to broad satire, sarcasm, parody, and wit. Vocabulary • Reprove: VERB: To scold or correct, usually in a gentle manner. • Concede: VERB: To admit as true. • Arrogance: NOUN: Overbearing pride and self importance. • Suffice: VERB: to be enough for. Literary Element p125 • What is humorous in this exchange between the Wife and the Pardoner? Literary Element p125 • What is humorous in this exchange between the Wife and the Pardoner? It is amusing quibble between to people who like to talk. The Pardoner claims to be intimidated by the Wife’s citation of St. Paul. that grants a wife power over her husbands body. He jokes that he has cancelled his marriage plans. Big Idea, p126 • How has Christianity supplanted paganism in King Arthur’s day? Big Idea, p126 • How has Christianity supplanted paganism in King Arthur’s day? The fairies have been purged by the prayers and blessings of the friars who wander the town and countryside. Warm Up • Do you think that women are capable of keeping a secret? • Why or why not? Explain…. Literary Element p128 • Why can’t the knight answer the queens question? Literary Element p128 • Why can’t the knight answer the queens question? His behavior so far shows no understanding of what women might want. He violated the maiden he came upon as if it were his right. Big Idea p128 • How does the knight expect ultimately to free himself through faith? Big Idea p128 • How does the knight expect ultimately to free himself through faith? He has faith that God will send him the answer when he needs it. Literary Element 129 • What is the wife making fun of here? Literary Element 129 • What is the wife making fun of here? The wife is ridiculing one of the suggested answers of what women most desire- a reputation for dependability, discretion, and the ability to keep secrets. According to the Wife, women are incapable of keeping secrets. • Are women incapable of keeping secrets? Reading Strategy p130 • Is Ovid’s tale convincing proof of the Wife’s argument that women cannot keep secrets? Reading Strategy p130 • Is Ovid’s tale convincing proof of the Wife’s argument that women cannot keep secrets? NO, an anecdote may bolster an argument, but it cannot be sufficient to prove the argument. Logic, reasons, and evidence are required to prove an argument. Big Idea 131 • How does the knight’s encounter at the edge of the wood evoke the pagan world? Big Idea 131 • How does the knight’s encounter at the edge of the wood evoke the pagan world? The knights vision of the dancing women suggests a coven of witches. Reading Strategy p132 • What criterion do the women use to evaluate the knight’s answer? Reading Strategy p132 • What criterion do the women use to evaluate the knight’s answer? They seem to know intuitively that his answer is correct. Literary Element p132 • Do you see any humor in the knights predicament? Literary Element p132 • Do you see any humor in the knights predicament? Opinion…there is poetic justice in the fact that the knight, who violated a young maiden, is now forced to marry an ugly old crone. Or…it could be amusing that the knight’s reward for answering the question correctly is his subjugation to such a woman.