Abstract

The bed-trick in William Shakespeare's All's Well That Ends Well and Measure for Measure asserts the heroines' autonomy in determining what lies in their best interests. When understood within the early modern framework of natural rights, particularly those promulgated by Hugo Grotius, the actions of Helen and Mariana, respectively, establish their perspicacity in pursuing a goal that betters their person and connection to the community. This argument lauds the exercise of their rights in both operating within and overcoming the patriarchal standards imposed on them. Indeed, the slippage between detachment and participation within accepted customs defines their very identity.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1086-329X
Print ISSN
0190-0013
Pages
pp. 76-94
Launched on MUSE
2017-10-20
Open Access
No
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