Figure 21: Essay Excerpt on Petruchio, The Taming of the Shrew

Below is an excerpt that falls under the comment “Makes No Sense.”

You may access the comment by clicking on the “M” category or by typing the title into the search box.

You may print the excerpt for class discussions.

Sample Excerpt

Petruchio must command his authority as husband early.  He states, “. . . I will be master of what is mine own.  She is my goods, my chattels; [s]he is my house,/ My household stuff, my field, my barn,/ My horse, my ox, my ass, my anything . . .” (III.ii.218-21). . . . So, Petruchio exacts his respect early from Kate.  His actions are based on the precept that “. . . the wife . . . is under covert or obedience of her husband” (Homily 177).  The wife must obey her husband and honor his requests.  As she honors him, she honors God; it must also be her desire to strive for peace within the home.  This is why Petruchio takes his position as head in exacting peace before and after they arrive home.  “For . . . it is a token of womanish cowardness . . .” to not be master, to not “possess” what is rightfully, under the law, his (Homily 175, 179).  Petruchio doesn’t say in general terms that Kate is just his wife.  He defines Kate and the role or roles she must play.  He defines her identity, her communication, and her ideals.  Before they leave, she states, “I see a woman may be made a fool/ If she had not a spirit to resist” (III.ii.209-10).

Figure 21: Essay Excerpt on Petruchio, The Taming of the Shrew


Although the paragraph focuses on Petruchio’s one view, the paragraph is in fact a representation of many ideas and various themes that lack connection.

In reading the excerpt and evaluating the questions, we find that the student begins with one idea (how Petruchio views Kate as a possession) but ends with a number of unrelated ideas. The most important thing to remember when presenting, comparing, and contrasting ideas is to explain the relation. In the same way that your friend asks what, why, who, where, when, how, in what way, and for what reason, your professor is no different.

Copyright 2011 Regina Y. Favors. All Rights Reserved.

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