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Boccaccio's FabliauxMedieval Short Stories and the Function of Reversal$
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Katherine A. Brown

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780813049175

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: September 2014

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813049175.001.0001

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The Fabliaux in Context

The Fabliaux in Context

BNF fr. 2173

(p.46) 2 The Fabliaux in Context
Boccaccio's Fabliaux

Katherine A. Brown

University Press of Florida

In chapter 2, the relationships of fabliaux to other types of works, particularly fables, reveal the generic specificity of the fabliau form as well as the interwoven structure of the system of genres in medieval literature. MS BNF 2173 offers an exemplary case, it is argued, of the manuscript compiler's deliberate mixing of genres. The analyses of various individual fabliaux demonstrate that rhetorical reversal in the fabliaux serves to undermine the genre's ostensible didactic aims, whereas similar techniques in fables reinforce the didacticism of that genre. The manuscript as a whole presents a progression of texts from the divine to the mundane.

Keywords:   fabliau, fables, didacticism, image du monde, manuscript study, MS BNF fr. 2173

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