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This wide-ranging study explores the ideological framework of genre in Old French and Occitan literature by charting the relationship between ideology and gender in five key genres: the chansons de geste, courtly romance, the Occitan canso, hagiography and the fabliaux. Simon Gaunt offers new readings of canonical Old French and medieval Occitan texts such as the Chanson de Roland, Chrtien de Troyes' Chevalier de la charrete, and lyrics by Bernart de Ventadorn. In addition, he considers many less well-known works and less familiar genres such as hagiography and the fabliaux. Drawing on contemporary feminist theory, he examines how masculinity, as well as femininity, is constructed in medieval French and Occitan texts, and he shows that gender is a crucial element in the formation of the ideologies that underpin medieval literary genres.
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