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In the Tigers Bride (TB) Carter represents relationships in the traditional fairytale sense in that they are only successful when both partners are equal, creating a balance in their relationship. Patriarchy is shown to damage relationships, as the female tends to be unwilling to follow the male lead and obey their demands. It is only until the female is willing, that balance is created in the relationship and the affects of patriarchy are not felt.
In the opening of the TC we see a clear example of patriarchy affecting relationships. The narrator tells us that her father is has ‘lost’ his daughter to ‘The Beast at cards.’ Patriarchy is shown negatively here, as the father uses his daughter as an object to gamble away at his own pleasure. This objectification shows how dominant males feel that they can sell women at their own pleasure if it help them have fun, this is shown in the line ‘he laughs as with glee’ showing how the father almost enjoys losing his daughter at a game of cards. There is a lack of paternal care from the father as he considers his daughter an ‘object of financial value to be bargained with.’ However, at the time that this tale is set, women were seen as objects for which a man could use to bargain with, in order to enhance his own social or financial situation, as is seen in the tale. From a feminist perspective and certainly from Carter’s point of view, the overpowering patriarch in the narrator’s life shows how patriarchy affects relationships negatively in the sense that men can often see women as objects which they can use for their will.
The narrator’s decision to not return to her father later on the tale shows the damaging impact which objectification and patriarchy have on a relationship. Instead she decides to ‘wind up the soubrette and send her back to perform the part of her father’s daughter.’ This decision to use a machine as a daughter also shows the damaging affect of patriarchy in relationships. Carter’s use of the soubrette shows how women are meant to be subservient to a patriarchal society. The soubrette is a ‘maid’ and is also described as being beautiful i the sense that she has ‘rosy cheeks’ and ‘blue rolling eyes.’ We can see from this that in a patriarchal society, the ideal women is subservient and beautiful and without the capability of free thought. Patriarchy damages a women’s independence almost as by obeying male demands, they lose their identity, as the soubrette shows as she is simply ‘wind up’ and not living, and so loses that unique personality that all women have due to her being subservient in a patriarchal relationship with her master.
When the narrator gets her first request from the Beast to ‘see the pretty young lady unclothed nude without her dress’ we see her rebel against social constructs of patriarchy by letting out ‘a raucous guffaw.’ Through this response, Carter uses the protagonist to show the imbalance of patriarchy in a relationship, as neither the beast or the narrator are happy about the situation, as the narrator refuses to be naked and the Beast does not get his will. Neither is happy as there is no balance or equality in their relationship at this point. The use of the word ‘raucous’ shows the narrators shock at the request emphasising her unhappiness at the request of The Beast. The narrator is then punished for her response by being placed in a ‘veritable cell, windowless, airless, lightless’ again highlighting how patriarchy impacts a relationship negatively as if a women fails to meet demands of her male counterpart, he will use his power to punish her, which in this case is being placed in a prison like sell, eliminating all freedom the girl has.
It is not until the end of the tale that patriarchy is shown to have a positive impact on relationships. The narrators decision to visit The Beast and become one with him, brings balance to the tale. The Beast uses his power to ‘rip off skin after successive skin’ leaving behind a ‘nascent patina of shining hairs.’ The narrator’s decision to offer herself to the Beast, despite fears of him ‘gobbling her up’ empowers the Beast to transform his Beauty into a fellow tiger. This is a positive form of patriarchy as Beast uses his power to transform Beauty, rather than hurt her, and this conforms to the traditional fairy tale ending of happily ever after. The Beast and Beauty come together in unity, creating a balance in their relationship, as neither holds the power balance, in this new animalistic social system.
Alternatively however, from a feminist perspective, this ending is not satisfying as the female is seen as having to transform in to try to challenge male dominance. The line ‘the lamb must learn to run with the tigers’ emphasises this, as the women must transform in order to fit in with men, and not the other way around. This could perhaps show the power of patriarchy in relationships as women always have to try and be suitable for the male in order for the relationship to work, the man does not have to try and be good enough for the women as he owns her in a sense, again emphasising how women are objectified showing the negative impact which patriarchy has.see more
St Anselm’s ontological argument is a deductive, priori, analytic argument which seeks to establish the existence of God by understanding the attributes of God in the sense of classic theism. Anselm wrote his Proslogion as a prayer originally, but it later became an argument for God by establishing his attributes. Anselm wrote his argument in two parts.
Anselm’s first part defined God as ‘that than which nothing greater can be conceived’ because if something greater existed, then that would be God, as God is a perfect being and can’t be improved upon. Anselm refers to the fool in Psalm 14:1 in his argument, ‘the fool said in his heart ‘there is no God.’ Anselm went on to say that fool understands God exists but he does not believe he exists. Anselm tries to disprove the fool by saying anyone who understands what is meant by God existing, must have a knowledge of him. Whatever is understood must exist even if a person chooses to dismiss it. Anselm points out the difference between an object in ‘ones understanding’ and to ‘understand’ that something exists. By using his definition of God, he argues that if God exists as a conceptual basis (in intellectu) then a greater being could exist both in mind and reality (in re). For example, if you are hungry, a real pizza is better than a fake one. There could be nothing greater than this being so it must exist and be called God. Anselm uses the logic of reductio ad absurdum which worked by proving the alternatives to God is absurd. Suppose God only exists in a person’s understanding, then God could be greater by existing in reality, meaning a greater God is possible, one which exists in reality.
Part two of his argument looks at Gods existent being necessary (not dependant on anything else) rather than contingent (dependant on other factors). Anselm started by suggesting that there is no possibility for God not to exist. He returned to his early definition of God, and suggested to be thought of as not existing would be inferior to thinking of something which must always exist. So therefore, Anselm concluded that God must necessarily exist.
Anselm argues that God exists because not only is God that than which nothing is greater can be conceived but he is a being with a necessary existence, if he were contingent, we’d imagine a necessary God. God is necessary and cannot not exist. This is the difference between the fool and the believer. The fool knows of ‘God’ but does not know God himself. Whereas the believer understands God is the ‘greatest being that can be conceived’ and he can’t be thought of as not existing.see more
In Shakespeare play Macbeth, Shakespeare puts a focus on the male characters leaving the female characters in the play being presented in several ways, including women being presented as innocent victims, sinister predators and being significantly absent.
The three weird sisters are primarily presented as being sinister predators towards Macbeth. The witches are responsible for implanting the idea of Macbeth becoming King into his head, as can be seen when the witches chant ‘All hail Macbeth, that shalt be King hereafter.’ They impact the plot of the play as they are they show Macbeth’s ambition to the audience as well as influencing his downfall, by making him decide to kill Duncan. Shakespeare use of a gothic setting highlights the Witches role as being predators. ‘The battlefield: thunder and lightning’ shows the Witches as watching battle unfold, and to a Jacobean audience they would be seen as controlling the events which unfold. The idea of the Witches being in control of the battle is also reflected in the gothic imagery of lightning as it was believed that Witches could control storms. It also links to the gothic idea of the supernatural disrupting nature, resulting in a storm. Due to the belief that the Witches are influencing the storm, and watching the battle unfold, much like an animal watches its prey, the Witches can be seen as sinister predators for watching and controlling the battle.
The Witches use of rhyming couplets in act 4 scene 1 also presents them as being predators. The use of rhyme such as ‘fillet of a fenny snake, in the cauldron boil and bake’ shows the witches to be powerful, as they are casting a spell. To the audience, this appears that the witches are the controlling fate of the characters and leading them to their downfall. This would have more of an affect on a Jacobean audience as they believed witches had the power to control fate through their use of magic, which is evident with Banquo saying that his ‘partner’s (Macbeth) rapt.’ Rapt refers to Macbeth being seized by something out of his control, which must be fate which a Jacobean audience would view the witches as influencing. The idea of the Witches controlling fate is also reinforced when the summoned apparitions tell Macbeth to ‘beware the Thane of Fife.’ This leads to the death of Lady Macduff and her son, as it implants the idea of Macduff killing Macbeth into his mind. So through indirect ways, the Witches influence the death of several characters in the play, making them be seen as sinister predators.
Alternatively however, the Witches could be interpreted as being significantly absent from the play, as after their initial encounter with Macbeth, they only appear when he needs them too, ‘I conjure you by that which you profess.’ The Witches appear to be at the call of Macbeth, and they only appear to have a significant role in the play when Macbeth needs to know more as he fears for his life as the reign. This reflects the patriarchal nature of the Jacobean society as we see how the witches are only featured when the man needs them to be featured. Additionally, they also vanish when Macbeth has finished with them, as we can see by the stage directions, ‘Witches dance and vanish.’ Although Macbeth is annoyed by their disappearance, by questioning it, ‘Where are they? Gone?’ they believe Macbeth has all the answers he needs, even if he doesn’t believe he does. This links back to the idea that the Witches are sinister predators as they control the knowledge Macbeth receives about his fate. After their disappearance, the Withes do not appear again in the play, supporting the idea that they are absent because the male character does not need them anymore.
Another character who can be seen as a sinister predator is Lady Macbeth. This is because she ultimately persuades Macbeth to kill Duncan in order to benefit her own position, ‘give solely sovereign sway and masterdom.’ By insulting Macbeths masculinity, ‘when you durst do it, then you were a man’ she uses the one method of persuasion she knows will insult Macbeth the most and persuade him into killing Duncan. She persuades Macbeth to kill Duncan which makes her appear as a predator as she takes control of the situation and uses her husband’s ambition to drive him to carrying it out. Her appearance as the more dominant voice in Act 1 scene 7 also makes her appear as the predator. Lady Macbeth’s line length is significantly longer to Macbeth’s short lines. Shakespeare’s ability to shift the traditional power balance between males and females is reflected through this. Giving a female character a stronger voice than a male character in the Jacobean era was not widely used and so would have shocked audiences. Lady Macbeth therefore appears dominant in the scene, and because of the way Shakespeare changes the traditional power dynamics between males and females she can be interpreted as a predator. As she is more in control of the situation than Macbeth and by manipulating him, she can be seen to be as much of a predator as the Witches.
However, Lady Macbeth could be seen as an innocent victim as she watches her marriage deteriorate before her eyes. When Macbeth’s guilt starts to accumulate, Lady Macbeth struggles to regain control over him, ‘what quite unmann’d in folly?’ as well as asking ‘are you a man?’ showing the divide that has grown between her and her husband. By trying to challenge his masculinity, we see that she has truly lost her husband to guilt as it no longer works when trying to control him, as it has earlier on in the play. As she loses husband, she also loses herself to mental decline over guilt, resulting to sleep walking ‘when was it last she walked?’ and her restlessness over the murder, ‘Here’s the smell of the blood still.’ Lady Macbeth could be seen as an innocent victim of a decaying marriage, as she can no longer control the relationship with her husband or herself due to the guilt she is experiencing. The audience are forced to empathise with her as she is presented as losing her mind.
Another female character who is presented as an innocent victim is Lady Macduff. Lady Macduff is killed by Macbeth in order to prevent the Witches warning of ‘danger does approach you nearly’ from coming true. Lady Macduff, who is presented as being a strong and maternal figure ‘and what will you do now? How will you live?’ is shown to care for her son. Her use of bird imagery, ‘poor bird thou’dst never fears the net’ shows how she is trying to teach her son not to be afraid and by teaching her son, we see her innocence as a mother. When she is killed, the audience empathise with her and start to realise the monster that Macbeth is. So because of her unjust murder she is seen as an innocent victim of tyranny by the audience.
Overall, women in the play Macbeth can be interpreted as innocent victims, absent from the play and predators. On the whole, women are more so presented as victims as they struggle to stay a part of the patriarchal society that is presented in the play and so they are unjustly punished for their role in it.see more