The Roles Of Women In Henry's Play

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 The role of women
One of the most noticeable features in the play is the treatment and the role of women in the play, especially through the characters of Henry´s two wives: Katherine and Anne, who present many oppositions between them, but a very important common factor, the portrayal of a silenced woman.
Katherine is Henry`s VIII first wife. She describes herself as a helpless woman ` I am a simple woman, much too weak/To oppose your cunning´(Act II, scene IV). Her role is the one of an obedient and submissive wife and she confesses it. Her figure is dependent on the king´s one as she confesses in her long and dramatic monologue:
I have been to you a true and humble wife,
At all times to your will conformable;
Ever in fear to kindle your dislike,
Yea, subject to your countenance, glad or sorry
As I saw it inclined: when was the hour
I ever contradicted your desire,
Or made it not mine too? Or which of your friends
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(Act II. Scene iii)

In her only dialogue with the Old Lady, Anne assures that she does not want to be a queen, and thus, she does not want to end up as Katherine, to whom she processes supreme pity. However, she changes her mind later on and marries Henry VIII. This change of mind is related, or at least Shakespeare give us that suspicion, to the women´s will of acquiring power. During the two women´s speech, the Old Woman, probably thanks to her experience as a server of the court. assures Anne that she will soon want to be queen as it is in women´s nature to desire that kind of thing.
For all this spice of your hypocrisy:
You, that have so fair parts of woman on you,
Have too a woman's heart; which ever yet
Affected eminence, wealth, sovereignty;
Which, to say sooth, are blessings; and which gifts,
Saving your mincing, the capacity
Of your soft cheveril conscience would

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