Yonec Story Lecture Notes
Lady in the tower trope—courtly love. Lady locked up in a tower that needs to be
It’s a fairy tale ideal, which emphasizes courtly love as seen in lines 95-99.
Her husband is ridiculously jealous, and so he locks her up.
This woman has been understood as malmariee—badly married.
Makes sense because the description o f her and husband sounds horrible. He’s old
wants to have kids and she’s young and “pure”. Woman gets married to someone of
not her station or equal to.
She is described as a flower that is withering away.
Re-inscribes hierarchy in order to fight against it.
Her husband is holding her captive, like feudal system, but she fights against it at the
When she meets the knight, things get better and she begins to feel a sense of
Recovered all her grieving.
Adultery is way of fighting against her situation.
Adultery wasn’t the norm of that time, doesn’t mesh up with things in that society.
But reflects things going on in the hierarchy at the time. She emphasizes, in terms of
the marriage between woman and older man, is marriage f bodies not minds, lines
This relates a lot to the “wheel of fortune”. Medieval belief that wheel of fortune
was fate controls us all. Can’t ride at top of wheel for extended time. You will fall,
but then climb back up and conquer again.