Academic journal article Medium Aevum

Incest Narratives and the Structure of Gower's 'Confessio Amantis'

Academic journal article Medium Aevum

Incest Narratives and the Structure of Gower's 'Confessio Amantis'

Article excerpt

Georgiana Donavin, Incest Narratives and the Structure of Gower's 'Confessio Amantis', English Literary Studies 56 (Victoria: University of Victoria, 1993). 103 pp. ISBN 0-920604-64-1. $9.50. This study is the most thorough attempt yet to confront the apparently incongruous juxtaposition of'moral' Gower and the depictions of incestuous love which punctuate the Confessio, and which Georgiana Donavin regards as both its aesthetic and its moral focus. In addition to the familiar stories of Canace and Machaire and of Antiochus and his daughter, attention is drawn to the incestuous relationship between Venus and Cupid: the unreasoned and unnatural lust of the classical love deities infects and consequently undermines the structure upon which the Confessio is founded. …

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