Petruchio

Taming of the Shrew

About Petruchio

His behavior is extremely difficult to decipher, and our interpretation of the play as a whole changes dramatically depending on how we interpret Petruchio’s actions. If he is nothing more than a vain, uncaring, greedy chauvinist who treats marriage as an act of domination, then the play becomes a dark comedy about the materialism and hunger for power that dictate marriages under the guise of courtly love.


A case can be made for either interpretation, but the truth about Petruchio probably lies somewhere in between: he is unabashedly selfish, materialistic, and determined to be his wife’s lord and master, but he also loves her and realizes on some level that domestic harmony (on his terms, of course) would be better for her than her current life as a shrew in Padua.


Longer Version of Kate Meets Petruchio, The Taming of the Shrew, ACT, 1976
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