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Women's Studies

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Marriage: Suffering And Bliss, Shannon O'Connor Jan 2013

Marriage: Suffering And Bliss, Shannon O'Connor

Undergraduate Honors Theses

In The Canterbury Tales, the perfect marriage is one where tension leads to yielding, resulting in bliss. According to the Wife of Bath, she has enough authority on the topic of marriage, through her extensive life experience, to lecture on "the wo that is in marriage." While on a pilgrimage to Canterbury, she draws attention to a gender-power struggle in marriage, and through her prologue and tale, explores a theme of what women most desire. Mouthing conventional misogynistic notions of the time, Alisoun seeks the kind of authority that within her culture is traditionally offered to men. She exemplifies a ...