A Midsummer Night's Dream

A Midsummer Night's Misogyny 12th Grade

As members of a patriarchal society, the women in A Midsummer Night's Dream are obligated to be subservient to the men. Power is only extended to women in the fictional world of Fairyland. This exemplifies the misogyny of the time, where women had no significant societal role in the real world. However, once in the Fairyland, the women are able to make their own choices and demonstrate their true power. Although the males in A Midsummer Night’s Dream are oppressively misogynistic in the “real world,” the supposedly submissive females prove to be the most powerful once they are given the chance to be so in the Fairyland.

Egeus, the father of Hermia, is the most misogynistic male in A Midsummer Night’s Dream. He dehumanizes his daughter Hermia by objectifying her and stripping her of her human rights and dignity. As her only parent, Egeus takes responsibility of Hermia and makes all of her choices for her, regardless of her consent: “As she is mine, I may dispose of her” (Shakespeare 5). Egeus’ constant possession over Hermia proves he only sees her as his property, not as a human being. By objectifying his own daughter, he has no qualms with forcing his decisions on her. The most prominent decision Egeus forces upon Hermia is...

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