William make their women hate them, which is

William Wycherley is arguably best known for his play titled
The Country Wife written in 1675. This year was also the era of Restoration,
which was the reestablishment of Charles II as king of England, thus allowing
for theatrical performances to resume in London following their several years
of unlawfulness underneath the control of the Puritan Commonwealth. Wycherley
displays a comedic almost mocking approach to marriage and societal norms,
characterized by the sexism. The scandalous play pushes away from basic
principles of puritan beliefs about marriage and introduces deceit and

Wycherley introduces his audience to
several characters, but more importantly he takes us through the journey of two
marriages, the marriage of Jack Pinchwife, and Sir Jasper Fidgets. By doing so,
Wycherley allows his audience to understand how common certain stereotypes
against women where during the Restoration period. Through both couple’s
journey, we learn that Jack surprisingly encourages his wife’s obliviousness,
because in doing so he is securing her loyalty and passivity. While Sir
Jasper’s wife who is much younger than he is, is ignored by him but allows her
to have male companions to keep her mind off other men. Thus, allowing the
audience to infer that social norms about women and matrimony during the
Restoration period were;

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Women could be kept in lack of love

 They could be

Loveless sex

the misconceptions mentioned above were true to societal norms during the
Restoration period, Wycherley argues that women, just like men, long for
intimacy in the bedroom, and if deprived of it, they will seek that intimacy
elsewhere. “A foolish rival and a jealous husband assist their rival’s designs;
for they are sure to make their women hate them, which is the first step to
their love for another man.” (Horner) Which introduces us to another vital
character, the infamous Harry Horner, who spreads the gossip that he is unable
to have children due to a disease. We learn that throughout the passages of the
play, he succeeds in having relationships with a lot of women, including the
wives of Jack Pinchwife and Sir Jasper Fidgets. Homer’s actions are not seen as
acceptable among societal norms; however, they are justified in this comedy
because the married couples among him, failed at their marriage and broke apart
on their own. 


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