The Taming of the Shrew

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Petruchio is a main character in the main plot of The Taming of the Shrew. He is a merchant who has just arrived in Pagua in search of a rich wife to marry. His father has just died so he has inherited everything. When he meets Katherine, the shrew, he decides to marry her and tame her, atracted at this point only by the money that comes with her. He therefore convinces her father to marry her off to him and uses a very forceful and uncalled-for way to go about this but suceeding in his task. In this production, i want Petruchio to, overall, be seen as a strong character who is doing Katherine good but is softened by her actions at the end. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 'The Taming of the Shrew is a play which comes from an age that is different to our own. The values of the characters in the play strike us because they are irremediably at conflict with what we perceive to be right. The way Petruchio behaves with Katherine is typical of the Renaissance; he tries to humanize what for him is not human because she does not conform to the rules of society as he knows it. There is never any question of whether such rules are right or wrong, and the process of 'humanisation' is a violent, ruthless one, where the object has to lose everything in order to gain a new identity; exactly how Europeans were behaving towards native people in America during the same period of time. But we are different now; we respect other cultures, and we have feminism. So why bother putting on The Taming of the Shrew? There is so much else in the Canon, so much more worthy, with so much more to say to us… This 'pleasant comedy' set to 'frame [the] mind to mirth and merriment' (as the play itself is announced in the Induction) is oddly, fiercely and brutally unsentimental.

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