Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Mod. 3 - Read. Assign. 2

Courtly love is evident in both of these works. Marie's work though seems to stress the point that the reader will have the final say over thier reactiona nd use of her work, Lanval. She knows that ever since people began philosophizing, they have added their own meanings and understandings to any writings they read. She embodies this courtly love though, even by dedicating her work to a King. This is a critical element of this kind of love - is must involve some members of the aristocracy - usually a knight and a lady - almost never between a husband and wife (since marriages were more business and status ventures than about love back then). Marie's work stresses a different kind though - focusing more on erotic desires and women's power as the motivating forces (perhaps a more true, accurate look at it than the men's version of knightly chivalry).
Gawain was more about chivalry and men's power in the courtly love scheme, at least in the sart of the poem. The tests he is put up against also seem to highlight the sexual side of these relationships, however against the Christian backdrop they may have been. Still, the courtly love shown in these works are not without flaws. In fact, they often appear to highlight the flaws of the Arthurian world and its romance ways. The hero of Gawain is not near perfect and his fault is clearly exposed in the work.

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