My rating: 5 of 5 stars
This is one of Shakespeare’s most controversial works, and debates still rage about whether its misogyny was written tongue-in-cheek, was a product of the times, or was indicative of a dark side of The Bard.
The plot revolves around two sisters, Katharina and Bianca, and their suitors. The younger sister, Bianca, is a catch and has many suitors vying for her affection. However, Katharina is, in the terms of Shakespeare’s day, shrewish. She is out-spoken, strong-willed, and on occasion downright bitchy; characteristics that weren’t particularly marriageable back in the day.
The father of the two girls will not allow Bianca to be wed until Katharina, his elder daughter, is also engaged. However, no man is willing to take that bullet so that one of his buddies can marry the much beloved Bianca. That is until Petruchio enters the scene with his friend Lucentio. Petruchio could use the lucrative dowry and believes himself equal to the task of taming the shrewish Katharina. Petruchio’s decision makes Lucentio (not to mention Gremio and Hortensio, i.e. the other suitors) extremely happy.
Petruchio’s approach to taming is to be hyper-sensitive to Katharina’s complaints. She gets no food to avoid her inevitable gripes about the food’s quality. Since no gown would be good enough, she gets no new clothes. These actions are designed to train Katharina to bide her tongue.
Like all Shakespeare, the language is phenomenal.
Like all Shakespeare, everyone should read this work.
I’m curious about people’s feelings regarding this play.