Analysis Of Moliere 's Tartuffe By William Moliere Essay example

Analysis Of Moliere 's Tartuffe By William Moliere Essay example

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In the instance of 17th century women, the words demure and subordinate may come to mind. During this time, the men held political and economic power while the women were expected to be subservient and stay in the background. To speak against a man could prove to be a great challenge in a time where men control your whole life. However, in Molière’s Tartuffe, he shows that women were capable of reason just like men, if not better at times. One of the women that showed considerable amounts of strength throughout the story was the wife, Elmire. Elmire was not only strong, but intelligent and fair as well.
Elmire’s strength becomes evident within moments of starting the play. As Madame Pernelle, her mother-in-law, storms out of the house, Elmire follows in order to figure out what her grievance is. Suddenly, Madame Pernelle explodes on Elmire going on about how she hates the way the house is run. She does not just stop with this jab, however, but continues to harp and even begins to throw insults at the rest of the family; she goes as far as to call her granddaughter stupid and her grandson a fool. Returning to Elmire, she continues her rant,
“—Daughter-in-law, please take this well—Behavior such as yours leads straight to hell. You spend money like it grows on trees then wear it on you back in clothes like these. Are you a princess? No? You’re dressed like one! One wonders whom you dress for—not my son. Look to these children whom you have corrupted when their mama’s life was interrupted. She spun in her grave when you were wed; she’s still a better mother, even dead.”(1.1 28-36)
Not only does she insult Elmire’s ability to run the household, already a stab in the heart, but she continues to twist the proverbial knife. Pernelle...


... middle of paper ...


...ement. She does not necessarily want to ruin Tartuffe; she just wants to help her family. Even if she has to deal with some terrible hypocrite practically slobbering on her, she will deal with it in order to help her family to the best of her ability.
Overall, Elmire’s character is strong, intelligent, as well as fair. She does not respond right away to another person’s rude behavior, but waits and thinks rationally about the outcome of her reactions. Instead of replying with more negativity towards Madame Pernelle, Elmire just buckled down and dealt with it as she walked her to the door. Also, Elmire is strong enough to stand up to her husband when she needs to. Her intelligence comes from her quick and sensible thinking when dealing with Tartuffe. Lastly, Elmire is fair in that she does not wish harm Tartuffe, but seeks to teach him a lesson and save her family.

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