Look Out World…I am WOMAN: Hear Me Make Whatever Sound a Shrew Makes…

As this week leisurely comes to a close, I find myself becoming impatient.  Why?  Because next weekend I get to go to a Renaissance Festival, of course!  Lady Cornelia and I will be exploring the Central Missouri Renaissance Festival in the realm of Kingdom City next weekend, and I can’t wait!  I find that I’ve had “Renaissance-on-the-brain” a bit lately, and just today I began to ponder:  how would I have fit in during the Renaissance?  Would there have been a place for me?  It’s the same question that came to mind as I read/watched Outlander; if I were truly able to go back in time, would I be able to blend in as well as Claire and Geillis (sorry…spoiler alert?!?)?  Of course I know that this isn’t terribly likely, but since when does plausibility enter into daydreaming?

There are, of course, many aspects to consider.  A woman’s behavioral education would have begun in the cradle, and the world was a far different place.  More years ago now than I care to admit, I recall writing a paper for a history class on the Renaissance and Reformation entitled “Missionary: The Position of Women in the Renaissance.”  The title is about all I can remember about the paper, mostly because my suspicion is that it was, indeed, the BEST part.  Regardless, the facts are plain:  women simply did not figure into most aspects of the Renaissance.  Silence was golden, afterall.

I am not particularly adept at silence most of the time.  It comes in fits and starts, however.  Once in high school I stayed absolutely silent for several hours just to see if I could, but that’s a rarity.  Besides, voluntary silence is far different than effectively having your voice taken from you as most women in the Renaissance would have.  A lady always left the speaking to her Lord (or closest male relative).  Unless, of course, she was a shrew.

After much consideration, I think I would have been a shrew (no, not the venomous little mammal….  Instead, think of an unruly woman who speaks her mind and doesn’t obey–as in Shakespeare’s Taming of the Shrew).  I think a lot and have copious opinions on all sorts of subjects…few of which stay sequestered within.  You will know what I think (whether you want to or not).  I also have a minor problem with the whole obedience issue.  Telling me what to do doesn’t go over well.  In fact, telling me what to do is the quickest way to insure that I won’t do it.  Try to tame me all you like, but I’m also incredibly stubborn.  I think there must have been many women like me during the Renaissance, though.  Intelligent, spirited, independently thinking women who would not allow themselves to be silenced.  Hear me, world:  I am a shrew, and I wear that title proudly.

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