chapter  4
14 Pages

Mary and Folz’s Transgressive Woman

Certain theories of the carnevalesque appropriate Mikhail Bakhtin’s concept of the “grotesque body” as a part of his claim to a liberating (or even revolutionary) character for Carnival. Advances in theorizing the carnevalesque have not been applied to the analysis of late-medieval or early modern German texts, even though many German carnevalesque texts exist for those periods. Bakhtin’s theory is anachronistic for Folz, as his concept is characterized through ideas of Renaissance humanism in Rabelais’s work.1 Scholars have deflated a priori suppositions for the liberating nature of medieval carnival with evidence of its potentially repressive nature.2 Clearly, if a concept of the body is to serve an examination of medieval culture, it must be as the contradictory and repressive body of that time.