The Un–mouth: Pornography and Political (In) Correctness in the fabliaux Cover Image

Po drugiej stronie ust: pornografia i polityczna (nie)poprawność w fabliaux
The Un–mouth: Pornography and Political (In) Correctness in the fabliaux

Author(s): Rafał Borysławski
Subject(s): Literary Texts
Published by: Wydawnictwo Uniwersytetu Śląskiego

Summary/Abstract: The question whether it is possible to view the discourse of the body present in the fabliaux as a manifestation of medieval pornography is the starting point for the discussion of what might have constituted the medieval sense of political correctness. The author briefly examines medieval perspectives on sexuality and sinfulness, which the Church Fathers constructed around the notions of potentiality and actuality. This, in turn, provides an analogy with the pornographic discourse of the fabliaux, where the potentiality of sin becomes actualized by the act of communication. Thus a correlation between pornography and speech in the fabliaux is also a correlation between sinfulness and a sense of political correctness. In this way, then, medieval sexuality shaped cultural correctness and medieval correctness shaped medieval cultural sexuality. However, both medieval pornographic discourse and medieval political incorrectness, so often represented by the former, could have only taken place in the sphere of the potential rather than the actual. In other words, what was politically incorrect in medieval pornography, was only so within the politically correct impositions of the discourse of social or literary norms.

  • Issue Year: 2005
  • Issue No: 11
  • Page Range: 51-66
  • Page Count: 16