TheTaming of the Shrew: Organized Religion and Obedience

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All popular organized religions have had a profound impact on male-female relationships. Each has a set of rules to be obeyed related to the roles of wives towards husbands and husbands towards wives. All seem to agree that in a marriage the wife must obey her husband. William Shakespeare in his play, The Taming Of The Shrew, explores this concept of obeying one's husband within the husband/wife relationship. The play challenges the current feminine attitude towards the marital vows of "honor and obey." Looking at the play from a strictly religions standpoint, one may see Katherine as a shrewish wife with a strong need to be tamed. Although a strong Christian presence serves as a backdrop to the play, it would be interesting to explore the play from the view of other religions, in particular from an Islamic perspective. Viewed from this angle, one discovers that Petruchio uses many devices to ensure the obedience of Katherine. Although his ends might be Islamically feasible, his means are very un-Islamic. First, Petruchio realizes that to have a successful marriage, he needs Kate to fully obey his every command. Religions all around the world have struggled with this concept. Secular feminine organizations have tried their best to erase any concept of "obeying thy husband" from existence, thinking the concept is ancient and bias when in actuality it has high social merit. In Islam a husband is morally and religiously obligated by God to care for his wife financially, mentally, physically, and emotionally. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), said in a hadith said that "All of you are caretakers, one of the other. A man is the caretaker of those under his care and a woman is the caretaker of those under her care." Sine a man is respo... ... middle of paper ... ..., 1999. Draz, M. A. Initiation au Koran, Paris: Presses Universitaires de France, 1951. Detmer, Emily. "Civilizing Subordination: Domestic Violence and The Taming of the Shrew." Shakespeare Quarterly. Fall 1997. Vol. 48 Issue: 3. pp. 273-294. 23 Mar 2002. Islâhî, Amin Ahsan. Tadabbur-i-Qur'ân (Urdu; 'Reflection on the Qur'ân'), 8 Vols.(Lahore, 1967-80). Mir, Mustansir. Coherence In The Qur'ân: A Study Of Islâhî's Concept Of Nazm In Tadabbur-i-Qur'ân, Indianapolis: American Trust Publications, 1986. Neely, Carol Thomas. Broken Nuptials in Shakespeare's Plays. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1985. Moulton, Richard. The Literary Study Of The Bible, 2nd ed. Boston: D.C. Heath & Co.,1899; 1909 reprint. Shakespeare, William. "The Taming of the Shrew." The Riverside Shakespeare 2nd ed. Ed. Dean Johnson et al. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1997.

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