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Carosone 1 Geoffrey Chaucer: Feminist Or Not?

By Michael Carosone Introduction: The Wife of Baths Tale Her name is Alisoun, but she is better kno n as !"he #ife of Bath$% An e&cellent ea'er an( better ife, she has ha( fi'e husban(s) the fifth as half her a*e$ +he is a lar*e oman ith a *a, bet een her front teeth an( re(, rosy cheeks$ +he flashes her bri*ht, scarlet re( stockin*s as ell as her se&uality an( ,romiscuity$ -n the !General .rolo*ue% of "he Canterbury "ales, Chaucer (escribes the #ife of Bath: A *oo( if as ther of bisi(e Bathe, But she as som(el (eef, an( that as scathe$ Of clooth/makyn* she ha((e s ich an haunt$$$ Hir hosen eren of fyn scarlet ree(,$$$ Bool( as hir face, an( fair, an( ree( of ho e$ +he as a orthy omman al hir ly'e: Housbon(es at chirche (ore she ha((e fy'e,$$$ 0Benson 123 -s she a feminist? 4es$ +he is o,enly sensual an( o,enly honest5 she is o,en ith her beliefs an( i(eas, an( is not afrai( to s,eak her min($ Her stron* ill to sur'i'e is only sur,asse( by her stron* ill to (efen( her ,osition as a oman, an( the ,ositions of other omen$ -s Geoffrey Chaucer as feminist? 4ou must com,lete the 6ourney that is this essay to (isco'er the ans er to such an im,ortant an( contro'ersial 7uestion$ "o (efen( her ,osition, the #ife of Bath refers to 8in* +olomon, ho ha( many i'es, an( to +t$ .aul9s a(monishment that it is better to marry than to burn$ +he 7uestions the Bible, an( asks hy omen cannot marry more than once if men can ha'e many i'es$ +he sho s

Carosone : kno le(*e of the Bible, an( challen*es anyone to sho her that Go( comman(e( 'ir*inity$ +he thinks se& is !*oo($% +he kno s that 'ir*inity oul( not ,ro(uce a ,o,ulation$ Furthermore, she belie'es that se&ual or*ans are ma(e for functional ,ur,oses and for ,leasure$ +he en6oys se&, an( has been illin* to ha'e se& hene'er her husban(s ha'e ante($ 4es, the #ife of Bath is some hat of a stereoty,ical oman of the Mi((le A*es$ Ho e'er, that shoul( not (iminish the fact that she is also a ,ioneer for the omen of her time because she is ahea( of her o n time$ +he is also a breath of fresh air because she is unlike the other female characters of "he Canterbury "ales, hether a ,il*rim or a character in a ,il*rim9s tale$ +he is una,olo*etic$ +he is not subser'ient an( timi($ +he is not ashame($ An( she (oes not nee( a man to think for her$ +he is bol(, ,rou(, an( in(e,en(ent$ Feminist critics ant to rea( more female characters similar to her$ The Wife of Baths Prologue and Tale: An Analysis ;nlike the other tales, the ,rolo*ue to !"he #ife of Bath9s "ale% is lon*er than the actual tale because it is in the ,rolo*ue that she shares information about her life an( e&,eriences$ +he has ha( a lon* life, an( has e&,erience( much$ An( the more she (rinks, hile talkin*, the more she confesses about her husban(s an( herself$ -n her ,rolo*ue, she makes it kno n that she has follo e( the rule of e&,erience rather than the rule of authority: !<=&,erience, thou*h noon auctoritee > #ere in this orl(, is ri*ht yno*h for me > "o s,eke of o that is in maria*e9% 0Benson 12?3$ +he e&,lains that she sees nothin* ron* ith ha'in* ha( fi'e husban(s an( cannot un(erstan( @esus9s rebuke to the omen at the ell ho also ha( fi'e husban(s: !Bisi(e a elle, @hesus, Go( an( man, > +,ak in re,ree'e of the +amaritan: > <"hou hast yha( fy'e housbon(es,9 7uo( he,% 012?3$ -nstea(, she ,refers the biblical comman( to *o forth an( multi,ly: !Go( ba( us for to e&e an( multi,lye% 012?3$ "he

Carosone 1 ,rolo*ue also a('ertises her nee( for a si&th husban(: !#elcome the si&te, han that e'ere he shal% 012?3$ An( althou*h, her tale that follo s is not about her life ith any one of her fi'e husban(s, her ,rolo*ue (oes intro(uce the theme of !so'erei*nty,% hich she has *aine( o'er her husban(s, an( hich moti'ates the ,lot of her tale$ "he #ife of Bath tells a tale of a youn* kni*ht ho ra,es a beautiful youn* mai(en$ "he ,eo,le are re,ulse( by the kni*ht9s beha'ior, an( (eman( 6ustice$ Althou*h the la (eman(s that the kni*ht be behea(e(, the 7ueen be*s the kin* to be allo e( to (etermine the kni*ht9s fate$ "he 7ueen then *i'es the kni*ht a year to (isco'er hat omen most (esire$ "he kni*ht e&,lains his 7uest to an ol( oman$ +he ,romises him the ans er if he ill (o hat she (eman(s for sa'in* his life$ He a*rees$ A year ,asses, an( the kni*ht returns to the 7ueen ith the ans er$ He tells her that omen most (esire so'erei*nty o'er their husban(s: !<#ommen (esiren to ha'e

so'ereynetee > As el o'er hir housbon( as hir lo'e,9% 011A3$ Ha'in* su,,lie( him ith the correct ans er, the ol( oman (eman(s that she become the kni*ht9s ife an( lo'e: !<that thou me take unto thy yf, > For el thou a*rees to the ol( oman9s (eman($ "he #ife of Bath is the ol( oman tellin* a tale about an ol( oman ho fin(s a husban( an( lo'e$ - cannot hel, but to ask hy the #ife of Bath, as in(e,en(ent an( stron*/min(e( as she is, is in nee( of a husban($ Maybe it is because she truly en6oys ha'in* so'erei*nty o'er a husban($ Maybe it is because she truly en6oys se&$ Or maybe it is because as a oman in a ,atriarchal society she (oes not kno any other role to ,lay besi(es that of a ife$ Here is here feminist criticism has been an effecti'e a,,roach to analyBin*, e&,lainin*, an( un(erstan(in* "he Canterbury "ales, es,ecially the #ife of Bath, her ,rolo*ue, an( her tale$ +ome feminist critics ar*ue that the #ife is a feminist, hile others ar*ue that she is not$ oost that - ha'e ke,t thy lyf$9% 011A3$ -n a*ony, the kni*ht

Carosone C Furthermore, some feminist critics see Chaucer as ,ro/feminist, hile others (o not$ #hate'er their 'ie s, feminist critics create intelli*ent, insi*htful, kno le(*eable, thou*ht/,ro'okin*, an( effecti'e ar*uments$ Elaine Tuttle Hansens Effective Fe inist A!!roach: "haucer As Antife inist -n her book, Chaucer an( the Fictions of Gen(er, =laine "uttle Hansen !is (istresse( that Chaucer allo s the #ife of Bath, ho seems to ant to challen*e the me(ie'al antifeminist

re6ection of omen, in the en( to acce,t it% 0Bei(ler 12A3$ Hansen is trouble( an( concerne( that the ol( oman in !"he #ife of Bath9s "ale% re ar(s the ra,ist kni*ht by *i'in* him the ans er to the 7ueen9s 7uestion therefore allo in* him to li'e an( esca,e ,unishment$ Hansen insists that the #ife of Bath is the result of a male ,oet ho creates a character to be !a feminine monstrosity ho is the ,ro(uct of the masculine ima*ination a*ainst hich she ineffecti'ely an( only su,erficially rebels% 0Hansen 1?3$ Other critics may a,olo*iBe for Chaucer9s limitations as a riter hen ritin* about omen$ Ho e'er, Hansen claims that such a,olo*ies come from other critics9 (esires to flatter Chaucer because they 'ie him as one of the literary heroes of the =n*lish lan*ua*e$ Hansen belie'es that Chaucer as a man ho faile( to un(erstan( an( (e,ict omen) half of humanity ) fairly$ +he makes no effort to hi(e the truth, unlike other critics ho belie'e only hat they ant to belie'e, an( hat is con'enient to belie'e$ -n her book, Hansen (i'i(es the history of Chaucer criticism on the #ife of Bath into !three ,olitical a*es: the ,refeminist, the feminist, an( the ,ostfeminist% 0C23$ "he ,refeminist era ) Chaucer9s time until the 1AD2s) 'ie s Chaucer as a !literary hero, a *reat, ise, *o(like creator of characters hose human foibles he ca,tures an( e&,oses, be it lo'in*ly or sternly% 0C13$ "he feminist era, hich be*an in the 1AE2s, is hen critics 'ie Chaucer as a male riter ho (i(

Carosone ? not un(erstan( omen 'ery ell, ,ortrayin* them in a ne*ati'e ay, an( ho as unable to rise abo'e the antifeminism of his a*e$ An( the ,ostfeminist era, hich be*an in the 1AF2s, is hen Hansen e&,lains many male critics not focusin* on the issues raise( by feminism because they a(mit that, as males, they are unable to un(erstan( the feminist issues$ Hansen is most trouble( an( concerne( about the ,ostfeminist era because she belie'es that its 'ie s ill further e&clu(e omen rea(ers an( critics from Chaucer: !the scholarly community, alon* ith much of the real orl(, ill return easily an( 7uietly to the ,refeminist status 7uo, here there is no ,lace for the omen rea(er an( critic of Chaucer% 0CD3$ An( it is 'ery im,ortant that omen9s 'oices are

hear( in the male/(ominate( orl( of Chaucer scholarshi, so that ne an( (ifferent i(eas are intro(uce( an( (iscusse($ -n his book, "he #ife of Bath: Case +tu(ies in Contem,orary Criticism, .eter G$ Bei(ler states that in her essay for his book 0,,$ :E1/FA3 !Hansen elaborates further on her 'ie that the #ife of bath is the ,ro(uct of a male riter ho re,ro(uces an( reinforces male attitu(es% 01123$ -n her essay, Hansen conclu(es ith a ,o erful statement: !-t is critical to remember that it is Chaucer as male ,oet, not the #ife as female character, ho simultaneously esca,es the constrains of *en(er an( en6oys the ,ri'ile*es of maleness% 0Bei(ler :FF3$ Hanson has focuse( my attention to the fact that Chaucer is misun(erstoo( an( has a talent for creatin* irony: !"he 7uest to (etermine hat the master of irony really meant can still take our min(s off our about orries

omen, as it has for so many centuries% 0:FF3$ Chaucer9s antifeminist attitu(e an( i(eas

may ha'e been (is*uise( behin( his talent for ritin* irony an( the antifeminist 'ie s of the male critics ho ha'e s,ent lifetimes i(oliBin* an( ,rotectin* him$ Also, Hansen effecti'ely raises my interest by ritin*: !-f Chaucer is the Father of =n*lish ,oetry, e shoul( not been so (ifficult, o'er the centuries, for his (au*hters to rite% 0:FF3$ on(er that it has

Carosone D - am not sure hether or not - totally a*ree ith Hansen9s ar*ument$ +he may be too harsh hen 6u(*in* Chaucer, for*ettin* that he as a male riter li'in* in me(ie'al =n*lan(, hen omen ere 'ie e( (ifferently than the time in hich she rites$ Ho e'er, un(er feminist criticism, Hansen creates an effecti'e a,,roach for me to rea( an( analyBe "he Canterbury "ales$ +he thinks about renamin* !"he #ife of Bath9s "ale% to !Alisoun9s "ale,% thereby *i'in* the #ife an i(entity, turnin* her into a ,erson, instea( of a man9s ob6ect$ An( - must 7uote Hansen hen she makes an effecti'e final ar*ument an( arns: But if e remain focuse( on Chaucer9s intentions, for *oo( or ba(, e re,eat the fun(amentally antifeminist mo'e ma(e ,ossible by the #ife9s narrati'es$ #e center our attention still on the (an*erous male 0,oet or ra,ist35 he is the one e care to con(emn or sa'e 0from lack of literary merit or (eath3, hile the oman in the ,icture 0*arrulous #ife or silent mai(en3 fa(es into the back*roun($ 0Bei(ler :FF3 "arolyn #insha$s Effective Fe inist A!!roach: "haucer As Fe inist -n her book, +e&ual .oetics, Carolyn Ginsha ,ro,oses rea(in* as a !*en(ere(% acti'ity an( usin* the meta,hor of the female bo(y as te&t, an( males as the !*lossators% an( !translators% of such te&ts$ +he has much to e&,lain on !,atriarchal thinkin*% an( !rea(in* like a man$% "hus, !"he #ife of Bath9s "ale% is an alle*orical te&t an(, as Ginsha asserts, is a te&t that o,,oses male *losses, because its narrator, herself, o,,oses male *losses$ "he #ife of Bath, herself, in her !.rolo*ue,% e'en mentions Ginsha 9s ar*ument an( theme hen she states the follo in*: !Men may (e'yne an( *losen, u, an( (oun$% Hea(ers an( critics must realiBe that the #ife of Bath is confi(ent an( s,eaks out a*ainst ,atriarchal (iscourse an( clerical teachin*) such a fact cannot,

Carosone E an( must not, be (enie($ ;ltimately, Ginsha ,rofesses that !"he #ife of Bath9s "ale% is inclu(e( in "he Canterbury "ales (ue to Chaucer9s nee( to 'oice an o,,osition to the ,atriarchal (iscourse$ Ginsha belie'es that throu*h the #ife of Bath, !Chaucer is able to reform an( still ,artici,ate in ,atriarchal (iscourse% 011D3$ +uch a belief seems to im,ly that Chaucer as an early feminist ho as unable to announce himself as such because of the miso*yny of his time5 therefore, he 'oice( his o,inions throu*h the #ife of Bath$ Ginsha sho s that Chaucer cannot be labele( an antifeminist, automatically$ +he also ,raises Chaucer for ritin* such a character an( tale: !"he #ife thus articulates the miso*ynistic hermeneutic$$$to make it accommo(ate the feminine% 011D3$ "he fact that Chaucer as born an( li'e( (urin* the me(ie'al times e&,lains his masculine 'ie s of his a*e5 ho e'er, throu*h the #ife of Bath, he allo s his rea(ers) an( maybe e'en forces his rea(ers) to !ima*ine feminine (esire, feminist rea(in*s, an( the reform of ,atriarchy% 011E3$ But maybe Ginsha *i'es too much cre(it to Chaucer$ Maybe he as an antifeminist, an( maybe the #ife of Bath is a ,oorly constructe( an( stereoty,ical female character, ritten by a miso*ynous, male/chau'inist$

Priscilla %artin and Alcuin Bla iress Effective Fe inist A!!roaches: The Wife Parallels Her "reator And &no$s Ho$ To 'urvive -n her book, Chaucer9s #omen: Nuns, #i'es, an( AmaBons, .riscilla Martin focuses on Chaucer9s success in ritin* rich an( (i'erse female characters$ +he (oes not center her attention on his limitations in ,ortrayin* omen, accurately$ -n a ay, she sho s a balance of feminist i(eas by realiBin* an( un(erstan(in* Chaucer9s limitations as a male riter ritin* about omen,

an( not ,unishin* him for his eaknesses an( i*norance$ +he (oes not ,lace him on the hi*h ,e(estal as other critics ha'e (one$ +he is fon( of the #ife of Bath, an( rites: "he #ife of Bath shares IChaucer9sJ (eli*ht in fictional an(

Carosone F narrati'e (i'ersity$ Of the ,il*rims she is the closest to Chaucer$ Kike her creator, she criticiBes throu*h come(y, she ei*hs authority a*ainst e&,erience an( e&,erience a*ainst authority, she is a are of the se&uality in te&tuality an( she 6ollily sub'erts the con'entions of male authorshi,$ 0:1E3 An( accor(in* to Alcuin Blamires, #oman Gefame( an( #oman Gefen(e(: An Antholo*y of Me(ie'al "e&ts, the #ife of Bath is a !sur'i'or of a lifetime in the se& ar$$$an( a *ui(e to youn*er recruits ho she ho,es ill learn un(er her tutela*e to use men as she feels they ha'e use( her% 01?A3$ "he #ife of Bath a,,ears to ha'e an uncanny resemblance to the me(ie'al stereoty,ical female fi*ure of Ka Lieilla, or the Ol( #oman, taken from Le Roman de la Rose>The Romance of the Rose$ Ka Lieilla is also a !sur'i'or of a lifetime in the se& ar$% - must a(( that - ha'e rea( many orks of literature in hich the female characters are true sur'i'ors$ An( - ha'e ritten much on the theme of sur'i'al as it a,,ears in literature, focusin* on the stron*/ ille( female characters, such as Hester .rynne, in Nathaniel Ha thorne9s The Scarlet Letter, an( the obstacles they must o'ercome in or(er to sur'i'e, an( that they sur'i'e hen the men (o not, sur,risin*ly, yet ob'iously$ Hence, in Chaucer9s (efense on hether he is feminist or antifeminist, he (eser'es ku(os for makin* the true sur'i'or of his tales a oman$ - think that it is al ays a com,liment to be 'ie e( as a sur'i'or, someone ho li'es to tell about surfin* the scabrous a'es of life$ "he #ife of Bath shoul( be honore(, an( - think that she is$ (ill %anns Effective Fe inist A!!roach: 'he Is )n "haucers 'ide Because He Is )n Hers @ill Mann insists that Chaucer is su,,orti'e of omen, in her book, Geoffrey Chaucer$ +o, - ask: #oul( an antifeminist be su,,orti'e of omen? No$ Ho e'er, sim,ly because Mann 'ie s Chaucer as a su,,orter of omen (oes not mean that he is a feminist$ "he 7uestion of

Carosone A hether Chaucer is feminist or antifeminist is com,le&, an( it arrants a com,le& ans er$ +he belie'es that he is !on the si(e of omen% because all of the ,ositi'e role mo(els in "he Canterbury "ales are omen, an( the male characters are fla e(: -f feminism has a contribution to make to Chaucer stu(ies$$$ it is$$$that it enables us to see the full si*nificance of hat is alrea(y there in his te&t$$$so sim,le a fact as that the CanterburyTales$$$contains not a sin*le e&am,le of the story/ty,e that embo(ies its i(eals in the central fi*ure of a male hero$ -nstea(, the tales that me(iate serious i(eals are focuse( on a series of omen: Constance, Grisel(a, .ru(ence, an( Cecilia$ 01/C3 Mann belie'es that !"he #ife of Bath9s .rolo*ue% (iminishes the antifeminism that Alisoun fin(s so (emeanin*, hile !"he #ife of Bath9s "ale% con(emns a ra,e of a youn* oman, by a kni*ht, so effecti'ely$ -n her tale, at the en(, the #ife of Bath is makin* clear that the kni*ht must submit to the authority of a oman$ 'usan &* Hagens Effective Fe inist A!!roach: An A!ology +usan Ha*en is a feminist ho a,olo*iBes for Chaucer9s limitations in ritin* female characters$ -n her article, !"he #ife of Bath: Chaucer9s -nchoate =&,eriment in Feminist Hermeneutics,% Ha*en 7uestions hy the #ife of Bath, or maybe Chaucer himself, notes the !(iscre,ancy of character that allo s an a,,arently stron*/ ille( female s,eaker to *i'e a ru(e, a**ressi'e, an( insensiti'e male character Ithe kni*ht>ra,istJ his heart9s (esire% 012D3 by re ar(in* him ith a lo'ely youn* bri(e$ Ha*en for*i'es Chaucer: #hile one mi*ht hol( Chaucer res,onsible ithin his

Carosone 12 limitations, one ou*ht not blame him for them$ ='en if his e&,eriment in feminist hermeneutics is inchoate, he as th arte( by limitations that his critics are be*innin* to *ro beyon( only no , si& hun(re( years later$ 011A3

+he makes clear that Chaucer as a !fourteenth/century male ,oet of ,ri'ile*e% 012?3$ But can he be for*i'en for bein* an antifeminist sim,ly because of the time in hich he li'e(? 4es, - think so, only because a ,erson is con(itione( to think a certain ay (e,en(in* u,on the en'ironment in hich the ,erson li'es, an( the status 7uo of hich the ,erson is obli*ate( to follo $ All ,eo,le are ,ro(ucts of the societies in hich they li'e$

%* H* A+ra s #efines Fe inis

And %y Thesis Is 'u!!orted

-n his book, A Glossary of Kiterary "erms, M$ H$ Abrams rites: !As a (istincti'e an( concerte( a,,roach to literature, feminist criticism as not inau*urate( until late in the 1AD2s% 0FF3$ He states that !IaJ ma6or interest of feminist critics in =n*lish/s,eakin* countries has been to reconstitute the ays e (eal ith literature in or(er to (o 6ustice to female ,oints of 'ie , concerns, an( 'alues% 0A23$ An( in or(er to un(erstan( the ,o erful im,act feminists ha'e ha( on literary criticism ithin the ,ast three (eca(es) an( to un(erstan( the effecti'eness of feminist criticism on literature) Abrams e&,lains: "he 'arious feminisms, ho e'er, share certain assum,tions an( conce,ts that un(erlie the (i'erse ays that in(i'i(ual critics e&,lore the factor of se&ual (ifference an( ,ri'ile*e in the ,ro(uction, the form an( content, the rece,tion, an( the critical analysis an( e'aluation of orks of literature:

Carosone 11 013 "he basic 'ie is that #estern ci'iliBation is ,er'asi'ely ,atriarchal$$$ 0:3 $$$conce,ts of *en(er are lar*ely, if not entirely, cultural constructs that ere *enerate( by the

,er'asi'e ,atriarchal biases of our ci'iliBation$$$ 013 "he further claim is that this ,atriarchal i(eolo*y ,er'a(es those ritin*s hich ha'e been tra(itionally consi(ere( *reat literature, an( hich until recently ha'e been ritten by men for men$ 0FA3 For the ,ur,ose of this essay, - ha'e use( Abrams9 (efinition of feminist criticism to ar*ue that it is an effecti'e a,,roach hen analyBin*, e&,lainin*, an( un(erstan(in* "he Canterbury "ales, es,ecially !"he #ife of Bath9s "ale$% Also, - belie'e that - ha'e create( a balance bet een the feminist critics ho 'ie Chaucer as feminist, an( the feminist critics ho 'ie him as antifeminist$ #hen - be*an my research for this essay, - thou*ht that my initial 7uestion, hich is also the title of this essay) Geoffrey Chaucer: Feminist or Not? ) oul( be ans ere( easily$ #ell, as ron*$ After rea(in* a ,lethora of feminist criticism, - realiBe( that my 7uestion as not sim,le, an( has been the to,ic of much (ebate$ As a man, - think that if - ans er my 7uestion - ill (o so ith a male9s ,ers,ecti'e an( bias, therefore, in'ali(atin* the ans er as ell as the 7uestion$ Ho e'er, - only ha'e my o n ,ers,ecti'e to formulate an ans er$ All any of us ha'e are our o n ,ers,ecti'es$ But - ill ans er ith an o,en/min() a min(, hich has been e(ucate( on the sub6ect matter) so as to not ,ro'i(e a biase( ans er$ "hus, - (o not think that Chaucer shoul( be labele( as antifeminist$ - also (o not think that he shoul( be cate*oriBe( as feminist$ He as a riter ho rote in a time

Carosone 1: hen omen ere o,,resse(, abuse(, an( subser'ient to men, an( his ork re'eals such as much as it is *uilty of such$ +tereoty,es of omen ere common in his time, as ell as in his ork$ He also ,aints ,ositi'e ,ortraits of omen, such as the #ife of Bath$ Also, he inclu(es stereoty,es of men in his tales, an( (oes not ,lace them in ,ositi'e roles$ +ome stereoty,es are base( on truth, but most are not$ An( - belie'e that it is safe to state that omen, o'er the

centuries, ha'e ,ro'en their stereoty,es false$ Maybe the #ife of Bath has hel,e( them to (o so$ "onclusion: The Fran,lins Tale Gori*en, the female character of !"he Franklin9s "ale,% is a stereoty,ical me(ie'al oman: obe(ient, (e,en(ent on her husban(, Ar'era*us, centers her entire life aroun( her husban(, faithful, loyal, *enteel 0*entilesse3, honorable, (esire( by Aurelius, ,rone to suici(e hen in trouble$ +he is the o,,osite of the #ife of Bath an( the #ife9s female characters$ But then, Gori*en is a female character create( by a man) the franklin) ho is a lan(o ner ho en6oys fine li'in* an( fine omen$ He (oes not ha'e such a hi*h re*ar( for omen, an( thinks of them as ob6ects, the same ay he thinks of his lan( an( ealth$ Chaucer (oes not create the character of Gori*en to stereoty,e an( insult omen5 rather, he rites her as a creation of a man to sho a man9s false an( i*norant 'ie of a oman$ Actually, !"he Franklin9s "ale% con(emns men, not omen$ "hus, Chaucer con(emns men, not omen$

#orks Cite( Abrams, M$ H$ A Glossary of Kiterary "erms$ +e'enth =(ition$ Fort #orth: Harcourt Brace Colle*e .ublishers, 1AAA$ Bei(ler, .eter G$ Case +tu(ies in Contem,orary Criticism: Geoffrey Chaucer: "he #ife of Bath$

Carosone 11 Boston: Be(for( Books, 1AAD$ Blamires, Alcuin$ #oman Gefame( an( #oman Gefen(e(: An Antholo*y of Me(ie'al "e&ts$ O&for(: Claren(on .ress, 1AA:$ Chaucer, Geoffrey$ "he Hi'ersi(e Chaucer$ Karry Benson, e($ "hir( =(ition$ Boston: Hou*hton Mifflin, 1AFE$ Ginsha , Carolyn$ Chaucer9s +e&ual .oetics$ Ma(ison: ;ni'ersity of #isconsin .ress, 1AFA$ Ha*en, +usan 8$ !"he #ife of Bath: Chaucer9s -nchoate =&,eriment in Feminist hermeneutics$% Hebels an( Hi'als: "he Contesti'e +,irit in the Canterbury "ales$ +usanna Greer Fein, Ga'i( Haybin, an( .eter C$ Brae*er, e(itors$ 8alamaBoo: Me(ie'al -nstitute, 1AA1$ 12?/ :C$ Mann, @ill$ Geoffrey Chaucer IFeminist Hea(in*s +eriesJ$ Atlantic Hi*hlan(s: Humanities, 1AA1$ Martin, .riscilla$ Chaucer9s #omen: Nuns, #i'es, an( AmaBons$ -o a City: ;ni'ersity of -o a .ress, 1AA2$