Sample Literature Essays On Elizabethan Values

Homework Question on Elizabethan Values

  1. Examine the role of female characters in Othello. What do they represent in the play?
  2. Do they have a common role?
  3. What does the depiction of women in the play reveal about Elizabethan values?
  • Female Characters: Bianca- The Whore Desdemona- The pure, chaste one Emilia- The

Homework Answer on Elizabethan Values


Life during Shakespeare’s period was different from today especially the ways in which women were being treated. Men dominated the community and treated women as second class humans. Woman never enjoyed the freedom that they have today because the society limited everything that they do from marriage to education. There were stringent rules and strict social hierarchies regarding the ways in which women were expected to behave while at home and in public.

It was the role of women to ensure that they maintain their family ‘honor’ particularly those who came from the upper classes. They therefore were not supposed to go anywhere without escort, should not wear makeup or clothes that were revealing and should not often speak in public or on matters of state or issues regarding men. The women were expected to keep their virginity until marriage, remain chaste and after marriage obey their fathers and husbands in all ways.

Homework Help

Shakespeare managed to depict these events and that women played during the Elizabethan error in majority of his plays. In the play Othello, despite the few women characters, their position in the society is clear. The three women, Emilia, Desdemona and Bianca are presented perfectly based on the Elizabethan society expectations. The audience see them behave and carry out themselves in undeniable ways linked to the expectations and ideologies of the Shakespearean’s Elizabethan society. In the play, women are represented as possessions, as submissive, temptresses, and whores.