Masters and Servants: An Inversion of Roles in Shakespeare's The Taming of the Shrew
and find homework help for other The Taming of the Shrew questions at eNotes. The central master-servant relationship in the play is of course Lucentio and Tranio thus seems to be the shrewder out of the two characters, not only in terms . characteristics of Shakespeare's early comedies - excessive rhetoric and his unique make a close examination of the relationships among characters in the play. The first master-servant relationship is that of Lucentio and his servant. Lucentio and Tranio's relationship as master and servant is an ideal of the . is central to the development of The Taming of the Shrew, as both characters.
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It could be that Tranio is just taking on this disguise in order to have the chance to play the part of a master and noble. However, Shakespeare constantly reminds the audience that Tranio's intentions are pure and all for the love of his master.
When Biondello exclaims how he wish he could play the master, Lucentio replies: But, sirrah, not for my sake but your master's, I advise you use your manners discreetly in all kind of companies.
When I am alone, why, then I am Tranio; but in all places else your master Lucentio. He does not abuse his temporary power as master with the other servants and continues to treat them as his equals except when he must keep up his pretense around the public. Tranio even goes as far to have Vicentio imprisoned in order to do as Lucentio told him. Tranio's obedience goes first and foremost to Lucentio even above his higher master. He does not obey Vicentio who is shown beating Biondello, rather than treating him or Tranio with respect.
This supports the idea that Tranio does this because of Lucentio's kindness for him. Lucentio, in turn for his servant's obedience, takes the blame for all the lies told and role reversals, begging his father not to harm his faithful servant, Tranio.
Analyse the Presentation of the Servant-Master Relationship in 'The Taming of the Shrew'
Lucentio's treatment of Tranio is reflected in his treatment of Bianca and their role as man and woman. Lucentio never hits Bianca or mistreats her in anyway, but spends the play wooing her and showing her his love.
However, Bianca does not completely mimic Tranio's obedience in her role as wife to Lucentio. Though Bianca is not as stubborn willed and shrewish as her sister, Katherine, she does not obey her husband when he calls her to him.Top 10 Master-Servant Relationship Anime
Biondello comes back to Lucentio to report: His relationship with Tranio differs slightly from Bianca, Tranio's servant hood more apparent and selfless. Petruchio, though rightfully attempting to stand as a master and man according to the homily, does not do so with his servant, Grumio, or wife, Katherine, with love and respect as it suggests. The scenes that introduce Petruchio and Lucentio begin by depicting their relationships with their servants, as if foreshadowing the way that they will treat their respective wives.
Grumio misunderstands his master when he asks him to knock on Hortensio's gate, after asking just one question Petruchio already loses his temper, responding: Later in the play, Petruchio also strikes Grumio and his other servants. In the yearthe Great Council passed the first Venetian law concerning domestic servants.
Starting in the thirteenth century, various government councils began examining and legislating aspects of the master-servant relationship. According to Romano, The first four clauses dealt with in one way or another, the contractual aspects of the master-servant bond. Chapter 1, citing a Senate law, stated that no servant, either male or female, in service on land or sea, could be bound by contract for more than ten years. As shown above, the history of master-servant relationships leading up the Renaissance legally balance each other out.
The dynamics instated keep masters in control, and give servants barely enough freedom have any other choice but to serve their employer for a living. Legislations created clause in the interest of masters, and servants lives were determined by their work and how they could prove themselves to the household in which they were employed. Servants, especially male servants, became objects of display and the necessary accouterments of a noble-lifestyle.
For instance, patrons now had artists include servants, particularly black pages, in their portraits; and among the wealthiest families the number of servants probably increased.
When Shakespeare wrote his comedy, The Taming of the Shrew, it was at the end of the sixteenth century, at the peak of these social attitudes towards servant-master relationships. In this play, Shakespeare examines the roles and relationships of both masters and servants.
He raises question of social positions by inverting the master and servant roles. As time went by, servants were treated better and better. A stable groom might aspire to become butler or steward in the same greater house.
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He also examines other servant to master relationships and dynamics as well. In the introduction of The Taming of the Shrew, a Lord has his servants take home a drunken beggar, Christopher Sly, to have a bit of fun with him. They put him in a bed, put rings on his fingers and prepare a banquet for him, all in jest, to entertain themselves and the Lord. The servants tell Sly that he is their master, despite his disagreeing. With a complete inversion of roles, Shakespeare allows Tranio, a servant, to take on the disguise of his master, Lucentio.
However, she cannot be wed until her shrew sister, Katharina, is married. In order for Lucentio to court Bianca, he takes on the role of a schoolmaster to tutor Bianca.