As You Like It
As You Like It Gender Quotes
How we cite our quotes:
I could find in my heart to disgrace my man's apparel,
and to cry like a woman; but I must comfort the weaker vessel, as
doublet and hose ought to show itself courageous to petticoat;
therefore, courage, good Aliena. (2.4.2)
On the surface, Rosalind seems to make a lot of ridiculous assumptions about what it means to be the "weaker vessel" (read: a woman). Here, she suggests that women are prone to crying and that it's a man's job to comfort women. Is she serious or is she being ironic?
CELIA [reading Orlando's love poem to Rosalind]
Therefore heaven Nature charg'd
That one body should be fill'd
With all graces wide-enlarg'd.
Nature presently distill'd
Helen's cheek, but not her heart,
Atalanta's better part,
Sad Lucretia's modesty.
Thus Rosalind of many parts
By heavenly synod was devis'd,
Of many faces, eyes, and hearts,
To have the touches dearest priz'd.
Heaven would that she these gifts should have,
And I to live and die her slave. (3.2.141)
Celia says that lovers tend to make idealized pictures of their mates, and women in particular fall victim to being put on a pedestal. Orlando is guilty of the same thing; all the women he cites here have had some great tragedy befall them.
Good my complexion! dost thou think, though I am
caparisoned like a man, I have a doublet and hose in
my disposition? One inch of delay more is a
South-sea of discovery; I prithee, tell me who is it
quickly, and speak apace. I would thou couldst
stammer, that thou mightst pour this concealed man
out of thy mouth, as wine comes out of a narrow-
mouthed bottle, either too much at once, or none at
all. I prithee, take the cork out of thy mouth that
may drink thy tidings.
So you may put a man in your belly. (3.2.19)
In her giddiness over her crush Orlando, Rosalind seems to fit a stereotypical role – a silly girl who gushes over boys.