Woods, Rebecca (2010) Men's Words in Women's Mouths: Why Misogynous Stereotypes are Humorous in the Old French Fabliaux. Reinvention: an International Journal of Undergraduate Research, 3 (2).

While many scholars have examined the subject of misogyny in Old French fabliaux in a number of contexts, no consensus has yet been reached on how the fabliaux can be considered humorous in the light of the stereotypes found therein. By conducting a close contextualised study of three fabliaux, this paper asserts that the humour of the fabliaux is created out of misogynous stereotypes by investing female characters with the ability to appropriate and subvert masculinist rhetoric and discourse styles. This subversive portrayal of women enjoys a circular relationship with humour; the creation of a clearly defined 'joke-world' within the fabliaux licenses socially outrageous portrayals of female protagonists, which in turn create humour through their incongruity with the realities faced by medieval women of all social classes.

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