Reinardus: Yearbook of the International Reynard Society, Volume 20. 2007–2008
  • ISSN 0925-4757
  • E-ISSN: 1569-9951
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This article explores Renart’s relationship with the feminine across the various branches of the Roman de Renart. At the same time a creation of Eve (in the Enfances), and the creator of Woman’s essence, her genitalia (in Labourage/Connin), Renart obsessively circles the feminine: seeking to control it through physical power (the rape of Hersent in Renart et la love), fantasizing about it (in Le Puits) and talking about it endlessly (especially in the Confession). The enigmatic object of his desire, the con, is a dark abyss to which he returns over and over again, seeking to understand it, even to refashion it, yet he is never able to achieve true mastery of it. Using Lacanian theory and Freud’s theory of jokes, this article examines Renart’s obsession, aiming to show that the fox as trickster/jokester is less in control than he believes: he is as much controlled and defined by the feminine as he is its absolute master and the imagined key to its ultimate meaning.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
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