The Wife of Bath's Tale and Prologue both present some very interesting views on women and their role in marriage. The Tale and Prologue both clearly present the idea that women should hold full sovereignty in marriage. Although the methods in accomplishing this sovereignty are sometimes different, the idea of full sovereignty is the same. In many different ways both stories present how a woman can rule in marriage. Essentially, through her experiences, Alison (the wife of bath) is showing us how the roles of men and women in marriage can be completely reversed.
From early in the Prologue we clearly see that The Wife of Bath is not afraid to use her wit and sexual prowess to get men and in turn make them follow her every wish. She makes it clear that she wishes to be the master of the relationships (much different than the traditional view). In most of the relationships she seems to get the sovereignty that she desires. Even though she only loved the husband who challenged her the most, she still won in the outcome of the marriage. It seems as though she just liked the way he challenged her power. After all, she did out live him, which does leave her in the superior position. .
The Wife of Bath's Tale presents the sovereignty differently, but very clearly. The Knight is sent after the secret of what women desire. The Knight doesn't realize that what he is doing is just that. He is at the mercy of women, not only to the queen but also to the old woman who tells him the secret at a cost. It is comical how he is completely transformed from, the Knight who abuses his strength on the woman in the beginning, to the weak man completely at the mercy of the old woman who becomes his wife. .
The outcome of both stories clearly define Alison's (The Wife of Bath's) theme of female sovereignty. The Wife's Tale shows it in the way a man disrespected women and was put into his place by women. The Prologue puts it as though, men are putty in the hands of women.