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Comic writing and the reader in the Quart livre of François Rabelais Sheppard, L. Randall 1989

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COMIC WRITING AND THE READER IN THE QUART LIVRE OF FRANCOIS RABELAIS By L. RANDALL SHEPPARD B.A., The University of British Columbia. 1976 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FUIJTLLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS  in THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES (Department of French)  We accept this thesis as conforming to the required standard  THE UNTVERSTTY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA April 1989 © L. Randall Sheppard, 1989  In presenting  this thesis in partial fulfilment of the  requirements for an advanced  degree at the University of British Columbia, 1 agree that the Library shall make it freely available for reference and study. I further agree that permission for extensive copying of this thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the head of my department  or  by his  or  her  representatives.  It  is  understood  that  copying or  publication of this thesis for financial gain shall not be allowed without my written permission.  Department of The University of British Columbia Vancouver, Canada Date  DE-6 (2/88)  Abstract  The Quart Livre of Francois Rabelais i s a work which l i k e all  the work of  through  abundant  narrator, genre  Rabelais,  of  authorial  commentary,  through a narrative comic writing.  poetics,  presents a non-verisimilar  which  response of a  reader  a  an  strategy peculiar  Following the  founded  and  generic  model of  theory  (catharsis),  of  we pursue  fiction,  unreliable  to a  certain  Aristotelian  tragedy  on  the  our inquiry into  "genre" i n the Quart Livre of Rabelais by examining the effects of the comic f i c t i o n on an "implied reader," an exemplary reader created by the generic text i t s e l f . distinguishes genres  which  " i l l u s i o n of Secondly,  First, the  expectations generated we examine  comic f i c t i o n  rely  upon  reality")  to  we examine the  a  the  by the  literary  authorial strategy which  i n the Quart Livre from other  mimesis  of  "representation"  obtain their characteristic question of  (an  effects.  "purpose" (purposiveness)  i n the kind of writing of which the Quart Livre i s an example, as l i t e r a r y form determined by the  (anticipated)  "desire" of a  reader.  Finally, itself,  we examine the major episodes i n the Quart Livre  with a view to drawing the p o r t r a i t of this reader — a  reader who "indulges" the author, a smiling reader g r a t i f i e d by the  accentuated  "difference"  identifying with the object of  of  satire,  his laughter.  a  laughing It  is  reader  this last  reader  who  i s t h e s i g n of t h e c h a r a c t e r i s t i c  ambivalence  h u m o u r i n Rabelai3, w h i c h  r e l a t i v i s e s any attempt  either  by  reduce  to k i l l  conclude  Rabelai3 idealise, "victim"  that  opposes  the  t h e comic tendency,  to individualise, necessary  audience.  Livre,  idealising  or  by the polemic  3acralising,  or to  l a u g h t e r t o t h e s m i l e of i r o n y .  We  the  laughter  of t h e  show3  to f u l f i l l  Comic a  writing  i n the Quart  f o r instance,  and thereby  to sacralise  the cathartic  "victimage"  a s we  i n  (social)  found  movement a n t i t h e t i c a l t o t r a g i c  Livre  of  tragedy  to  the tragic functioni n  i t i n the Quart victimage:  the  i d e a l a n d t h e " i n d i v i d u a l " b e c o m e t h e common a n d t h e " o r d i n a r y , " and  t h e s a c r e d becomes t h e p r o f a n e ,  laugh.  i n order  that the reader  may  - iv -  Table of Contents  Abstract  ii - iii  Introduction  1-5  Chapter I. Author and Reader: the Unreliable Narrator and the "Hypocrite lecteur"  6-19  Chapter II. Literary Form and the Desire of the Reader  20-32  Chapter III. Portrait of the Reader i n the Quart Livre 33 A. Reader's Interest and Digression: The C o u i l l a t r i s Story  33-40  B. The "monde a l'envers". Dindenault and the Chiquanous  40-45  C. The Mimesis of Laughter: The Tempest Story  45-52  D. Satire and Difference: Quaresmeprenant and the Andouilles  53-59  E. P a p e f i g u e 3 and Papimanes: the Non-committal Reader  59-65  F.  Messer Gaster:  the " J u 3 t e Milieu"  of the B e l l y  65-70  Conclusion  71-75  Notes  76-81  Bibliography  82-84  I  Introduction  In choosing to examine of  Francois Rabelais,  Livre,  I am choosing  wider genre,  Livre.  to  rules  Instead,  inductively, the  and not see  "comic writing" and the  Quart  i t not merely as an example  of a  i n which case the object would be to indicate  i n which the  ways  "comic writing" i n the Quart Livre  the  of genre aim  discovering  of  are this  i n the Quart  respected  study  the  is  to  proceed  the effects produced i n the reader by  comic narrative and bringing to light  the how and why of  these effects.  In order to study the how and why of these effects I have found i t necessary to posit sense of  Foucault's  "What i 3 an author?"!),  function, outside the text. h i s t o r i c a l , geographical is  not,  Quart  for  instance,  Livre  (as  was  a certain author-function (in  and thus reader-  This does not mean a recourse to an  or biographical approach.  with the geographical the  the  case  with  The concern  references i n  Lefranc  and  the  the  other  positivist  c r i t i c s of the Rabelaisian text) and their consequent  historical  reference  — the  search for  the Northwest  Passage,  the discovery of the New World and the concomitant explosion of knowledge might be. of  i n the Renaissance  — interesting  as these questions  Nor i s the concern here with the different  images i n the Quart Livre:  the  series of  eating,  "series" sexual.  2 scatological  and  death  Mikhail Bakhtin i n his  images  so  brilliantly  work on the  elaborated  "chronotope"  by  i n Rabelai3,  which he sees as a restoration of the primacy of the body image a 3 an expression of cosmic unity after the Platonic and medieval denial Livre  of  the body.  a3 a  cultural  history of ideas. posited here means of  The interest  here  product,  not  but  then i s as  a  i n the Quart  document  in  the  The p r i n c i p l e of r e f e r e n t i a l i t y that i s to be  — "implied author" and "implied reader" — i s a  elaborating the kind of writing the reader  i n the Quart Livre, a way of defining genre.  encounters  We are concerned,  not with the various series of images i n the Quart L i v r e , or the new f i c t i v e  elaboration of time and space one encounters  there,  so much as with the appeal of this imagery within the context of the inter subjectivity of author and reader, with how the a r t i s t (the author) adopts a certain rhetorical strategy i n a  specific  socio-cultural context i n order to elaborate his vision.  The narratives of  the Renaissance and of  the 18th century  distinguish themselves from those of the periods where c l a s s i c a l and  realistic  commentary.  tastes  prevailed  by an abundance  The commentary one find3  of  authorial  i n the Quart L i v r e,  not  only i n both of the Prologues (that of 1548 and of the f i n a l one of 1552) but also i n the narrative proper, wherever the "je" of the  author  (or  narrator)  intrudes,  brings  into  whole mimetic project of an author of f i c t i o n . reason that point,  in  we take order  to  the  question It i s  authorial commentary as  re-examine  the  fictive  the  premises  the  for this starting of  the  3  implied author i n the Quart Livre.  Our project i 3 an enterprise a deux volets: instance,  i n the  first  to examine the "comic writing" i n the Quart Livre as  an expression of "contract" between reader and author, different and  distinct  from  that  "romanesque" genre;  the  reader  lecteur,"  examine  pretending  the  implied  question  author  of  to  its  to  from his  fulfills  in  to  of  destiny  the  anticipated  to  or  implied  illustrate  "hypocrite  the  narrator  this volet,  we s h a l l  desire  to the Prologues of  episodes  the  as  "truth"  l i t e r a r y form as a  the  "dramatic"  "unreliable" narrator and  his  believe  the  show that  As the second part of  Although references 3ome  himself  also  pretends to t e l l .  exists  and secondly,  author distinguishes that  which  "response" of  his  of  the  reader.  the Quart Livre and to the  argument,  we  are  concerned mainly with elaborating the "comic writing" suggested in  the t i t l e  Livre  and  of  t h i 3 thesis,  the  particular  the kind of writing i n the Quart intersubjectivity  it  entail3,  relation between author and reader which brings into  a  question  the whole idea of mimesis as representation.  We w i l l project: narrative  thereafter  "the reader." itself,  we  proceed with the  second volet  of  the  Progressing through the diegesis of the attempt  "envisaged reader" (a term  U3ed  to  draw  a  portrait  by Dorothy Coleman2):  of  the  a reader  whose attention i 3 not on "what happens next," a laughing reader  4 whose or  laughter betrays  an  irreductible  smiling  reader  "Nature"  and  Having  the  a  narrow  i n the Quart  laughing  reader i n the  can  laugh  object  at  of  that  he  3atanic  as  he  first  the  episodes  we  reader's  difference  will  ideological  pure d i f f e r e n c e  the  war  Papemane3  with  an  operating  principle  ironic  must  finally,  well  in his  t o R a b e l a i s and "cosmic"  of  ( B a k h t i n 1968,  the  analyse  Quart  through the  perspective  the  the  relativity  which  navigates  forswearing  a l l ideological  extremes.  the of  where  Rabelais' or  where  the  satire  perspective  with and  margins The  at,  "history  of  and  the  identity  author:  Quaresmeprenant and  the  who  59-144).  implied  displacement on  as  Voltaire,  object  A n d o u i l l e s , becomes, through  reader  of  Livre,  fictive of  be  which  h i 3 world,  nature  exclusive satire  with  is a  as  rejoin Bakhtin  of  of  or p a r o d i e e l a b o r a t i o n  of A n t i p h y s i e , " b l u r r e d " b y  the  stories,  a3  extremes.  i n drawing the p o r t r a i t mimetic  a  championing  ideological  laugh3 w i t h ,  of a n u n i m a g i n a b l e  readable" a l l e g o r y of  who  chapter  predominates,  the  work,  difference,  author  mimesis  reader,  inclusive  against  felt  of  find  the  Here we  the  later  age  certain  "mockery" of B a u d e l a i r e  The  with  a  we  and  an  Aristotelian  laughing  ridicule.  laughter,  with  an  satire,  himself,  valorises  identity  at  comic n a r r a t i v e , a m i m e s i s of i d e n t i t y  The  l a u g h t e r , " i n the  of  in  Livre,  s e p a r a t e s humour from difference.  "pleasure p r i n c i p l e "  aligned  "mediocrity"  acknowledged  of  certain  ambiguity  firmly  rejected  principle  a  the  the  "too-  t h e comic f a n t a s y the  Papefigues-  irony, of  final  a  the image  comic sacred of  the  5 book, Messer Gaster, valorises  the  "belly" as  common good and  "juste milieu," which does not abrogate the domain of the 3acred to i t s e l f , the  but which instead as  famous descriptive  "gouffre de 1'esprit,"  phrase of  to use  Victor Hugo i n reference  to  Rabelais-3 recapitulates a certain f o l k l o r i c wisdom or "popular culture."  I contend that the Quart Livre remains a l i t e r a r y text, and not just a repository of "popular culture."  As a l i t e r a r y text,  one of the f i r s t to be reproduced by the printing press, i t must be analysed as a narrative having an "implied author" (term to which i s ascribed a l l the strategies of the text, the narrator, etc.) and thus an "implied reader." have  turned  my attention,  identifications  but  It i s to t h i 3 reader that I the  strategies  and responses demonstrated are,  of of  reading,  course, my  own. Thus the "implied reader" i s unavoidably myself, but myself taken as an example of subject to generic expectations generated i n the text. highest  Literary c r i t i c i s m may be,  form of  autobiography," but  form" insofar as i t i s  it  as Wilde said, i 3 only the  "the  "highest  "autobiography" that participates i n the  culture, not only i n the cultural horizon of the text, but also i n that of the reader, the c r i t i c himself.  6  Chapter I.  Author and Reader:  The Unreliable Narrator and the "Hypocrite Lecteur"  Since the Quart Livre i s not only a "literary text," also a narrative, with a l l that this  term implies  but  (a narrator,  etc. ) we w i l l begin the inquiry into i t s "comic" s p e c i f i c i t y by an  examination  author."4  of  the  We w i l l  ideologically,  narrative  attempt  to  rather  strategies  locate  than  "ideological alignment"  "implied  "implied author"  thi3  we w i l l  locate the "implied reader" ideologically. this  its  "biographically"  "psychologically," since by doing so,  is  of  or  be able also to  For our purposes,  it  of author and reader which i s  most important, since i t i s this which determines the operation of irony and parody i n the narrative i t s e l f .  First,  let  us  examine  the  device  of  the  "prologue" i n Rabelais,  the liminary text i n which the author,  in  outside  principle  itself,  standing  the  work  speaks about his work as a whole.  Garqantua, Alcofribas,  for  instance,  considers  his  the  author,  work  using  of  literary  fiction  In the Prologue to  under the gastronomic  pseudonym of or medical  metaphors:  his books are "livres de haute gresse" with healing  properties,  concealing their precious  inner properties with an  ugly exterior, a3 S o c r a t e 3 concealed his wisdom under a Silenusl i k e appearance.  7  In  the  1552  Prologue  to  the  Quart  Livre,  author does not refer to his book a 3 a book. to himself,  the  Instead, he refers  the author, under the medical metaphor of a doctor  who wishes h i 3 readers perfect health. as  however,  Addressing h i 3 readers  "gens de bien," and thereby abandoning the previous formula  "Beuveurs himself  et  goutteux  tres  pr6cieux,"  i n a direct "oral" style,  the  author  presents  30 to speak, as a personnage  groping for his glasses i n order better to see his interlocutor, the reader, viewed perhaps as an intruder into h i 3 study: Gens de bien, Dieu vous sauve et guard! Ou estes vous? Attendez que je chausse mes lunettes (Rabelais,15) The of  the  l i t e r a r y work i 3 only referred to after the narration Aesopian  metaphorically as  fable the  of  Couillatris,  hearing of  a 3tory  and  rather  then  only  than as  the  reading of a book: Or, en bonne sante toussez un bon coup; beuvez en t r o i s , secouez de hait vos a u r e i l l e s , et vous oyrez dire merveilles du noble et bon Pantagruel. [my underlining] (Rabelai3,29)  In the 1552 Prologue to the Quart Livre,  therefore,  i n contrast  to the Prologues to the other books of Rabelais, the author does not  distance  narrator.  himself  from his  book  and  therefore  from h i 3  On the contrary, he becomes, i n effect, a dramatised  narrator who t e l l s the story of C o u i l l a t r i s , which makes up the bulk of the Prologue.  e  It  i s i n the Prologue  himself  from  readers  h i s work,  (addressed  illustres,  the author  and t h e r e f o r e from  by  e t vous  of 1548 t h a t  the  Goutteux  customary tres  distances  h i s narrator.  formula  precieux")  The  "Beuveurs  tres  are invited  "to  g i v e , t o 3 a y , t o j u d g e " on b e h a l f of t h e a u t h o r i n t h e m a t t e r of h i s work.  They a r e imagined a s h a v i n g i n v i t e d  "continuation considered The  l'hy3toire  as reading  author  replete  de  flatters  Rabelais.  texts  and  Pantagrueline"  (Rabelais,6),  ( " l e c t u r e " ) and n o t a s h e a r i n g h i s readers,  with the i r o n i c  liminary  the author to the  formulae  adopting  an  o f t e n encountered  i n the diegesis  of  a  story.  ironic  tone,  both i n the  the f i c t i v e  He a s k s h i s r e a d e r s t o r e s e r v e t h e i r  t h e s e v e n t y - e i g h t h book, 3 a y i n g a l s o t h a t he w i l l  text  in  laughter u n t i l maintain  j u s que s a u f e u e x c l u s i v e m e n t que v o u s e s t e s g r a n d s g e n s de b i e n , t o u s e x t r a i c t z de b o n s pere3  e t b o n n e 3 meres.  (Rabelais,6)  The a u t h o r t h e n a p p e a l s t o t h e r e a d e r s t o j u d g e h i 3 c a l u m n i a t o r s (characterised as d e v i l s through list  of whom e c h o e s s i m i l a r  the etymology  lists  of d i a b o l u s ) , t h e  i n t h e o t h e r P r o l o g u e s and i n  t h e Abbaye de Th61eme e p i s o d e i n G a r a g a n t u a : c a f a r s , cagotz, matagotz, b o t i n e u r s , p a p e l a r d s , b u r g o t z , p a t e s p e l l u e s , p o r t e u r s de rogatons, chattemites. (Rabelais,6) I n t h e 1548 P r o l o g u e , t h e r e f o r e , t h e a u t h o r "moral  territory,:"  so t o s p e a k ,  stakes out h i s  by i m p l i c a t i o n a l 3 0  locating  9 his  "ideal"  readers  ideologically,  while  excluding  those who  misread him by attributing heresy to his comic tales, Rabelais  in  Chastillon  the  dedicatory  "folastries  Roi" (Rabelais,13). with his readers,  letter  to  Odet  the  called by  Cardinal  of  joyeuses, hors 1'offense de Dieu et du The author thereby establishes complicity  a kind of connivance which, as often happens  with s a t i r i c writing, i s a precondition for comic effect which depends on the exclusion of a third party. back," so to speak,  It  is  "behind the  of the excluded third party that the author  and reader laugh together.  The exclusion of  the h y p o c r i t i c a l  misreaders establishes a certain permanent "dramatic irony" upon which the connivance of author and reader i s based, and which to some extent makes possible  the comic atmosphere.  other "dramatic ironies," as we s h a l l see,  How, then, values  held  complicity,  i 3 the ground of  in  common  revealed?  passages which reveal, and b e l i e f s ) least  which In  the  But certain  are involved as well.  ideological commonality,  facilitate Quart  this  Livre  i n different ways,  author-reader  there  are  the ideology  of the implied author, to a greater extent,  more s p e c i f i c a l l y ,  than,  say,  the  the  celebrated  many  (values or at  letter  of  Gargantua i n the eighth chapter of Pantagruel, or the Th61eme episode i n Gargantua, which are limited to widely-held humanist values.  The f i r s t way i n which the author's ideological  i s revealed i s  i n the story (histoire)  itself.5  "bias"  An example of  this would be the invention of Antiphysie and her children, the  10  familiar  catalogue  of anathematised misreaders,  reminiscent of  the l i s t  of those excluded from Theleme, though 3 l i g h t l y more  h i s t o r i c a l l y specific: . . . . l e s Matagotz, Cagotz et Papelars, les Maniacle3, P i s t o l e t z ; l e 3 Demoniacles Calvins, imposteurs de Geneve (Rabelais,112) A second perspective  way  i n which  intrudes  implied author's  i 3 through the  his dramatised narrator, as the  the  narrator comments  on the  on the  ideological  "reliable" commentary^ of island of Medamothi, where  painting depicting  the  rape of  Philomela: Je vous jure, par le manche de ce f a l l o t que c'estoit une paincture gualante et mirifique. Ne pensez, je vous p r i e , que ce feust le protraict d'un homme couple sus une f i l l e . Cela est trop sot et trop lourd. (Rabelais,33) Thirdly,  the implied author's values are further revealed  through the  reliable  function i s  to  commentary of  reinforce  the  secondary characters whose  reader's  ideological  commonality  with the author?, such as Epistemon i n the Homenaz episode: A ces motz, se leva Epistemon, et d i s t tout bellement a Panurge: "Faulte de 3 e l l e persee, me contraint d'icy. Ceste farce me a d e 3 b o n d 6 le boyau c u l l i e r : je ne arresteray gueres." (Rabelais,156)  A fourth way that  the author reveals  and reinforces  the  11  values  he  holds  descriptions with, as  i n  common  with  f o r instance,  the  reader  qualificative  i s  through  adjectives,  such  t h e d e s c r i p t i o n of Manduce, i d o l o f t h e G a s t r o l a t r e s : C ' e s t o i t une e f f i g i e m o n s t r u e u s e , r i d i c u l e , h y d e u s e e t t e r r i b l e aux p e t i t z e n f a n t s , a y a n t l e s yeux p l u s g r a n d s que l e v e n t r e , e t l a t e s t e p l u s g r o s s e que tout l e r e s t e du corps.... (Rabelais,176)  Here  we  are dealing  "realistic" body,  implications:  i n popular  description  The  usage  made who,  of n a t u r e .  "anatomy"  "fouetteur  description  de3 p e t i t z enfants,"  implied  author  (itself  a  catalogue  i n a  "universality" artistic  of  a  That  of  to the  metaphors)  thus  or to create  the i l l u s i o n  on t h e p a r t  (and thus virtual  very  little  of r e a l i t y .  t h e o b v i o u s l a c k of  of h i s c h a r a c t e r s , the readers  destroys  public),  makes  as  category.  a l l indicate  and  t o "take  t h e myth  u n i t y o f t h i 3 t y p e o f w r i t i n g i s t o be f o u n d  than i n i t s r e a l i s t i c  "dead  renverse," i s  i n Rabelais  a n d autonomy  polemic  a  correspond  also f a l l s into this  r h e t o r i c a l manipulation which forces  sides"  simply  un arbre  c o n t i n u a l i n t r u s i o n s t h r o u g h commentary,  verisimilitude  no  t h e head t o o b i g f o r t h e  literal), "comme  with  The d e s c r i p t i o n o f Q u a r e s m e p r e n a n t  i s i n fact  a t t e m p t t o be " o b j e c t i v e "  the  with  the d e t a i l s ,  of A n t i p h y s i e ,  a travesty  (whose  His  course  t h e eyes t o o b i g f o r t h e stomach  metaphor"  also  of  of t h e that  the  elsewhere  "mimetic" e f f e c t .  i s t o say, the author  does  n o t attempt  to  efface  12 himself  (to  minimise  commentary)  3ilence an i l l u s i o n of  in  order  to  create  by h i 3  "objectivity," as i n a r e a l i s t i c mimetic  narrative presentation.  Although,  dialogue  as i n dramatic presentation,  i n direct style,  imitating direct speech (as  for  instance,  he  presents thereby  i n Panurge's blubbering during  the  tempest, or his bargaining with Dindenault), i t i s i n a parodie mode, that i s , with  a  effect  through exaggeration to create not  character  through  verisimilitude,  but  produced by caricatural deformations  The reader i s  therefore  not expected to  identification a  of  "distancing" spoken  "experience"  idiom.  the work  through i d e n t i f i c a t i o n with characters made believable by means of an a r t i s t i c i l l u s i o n of r e a l i t y , but to judge r e a l i t y through the work, which brings r e a l i t y into a comic l i g h t , ambiguity and irony. dimensions,  since  This "reality" can be seen only i n social  the  h i s t o r i c a l l y specific The  fiction  brings  it  reading one,  does not into  the l i g h t of  public  and not a  therefore  question,  must  a  "real"  "universal" v i r t u a l  imitate  which  be  seems  social  reality;  and one. it  to  suggest  an  almost  so  far  "reliable"  Brechtian commitment to didacticism.8  The  commentary  commentary, view  of  (implied)  the  I  have  mentioned  commentary which reflects implied author,  readers.  the  is  the ideological point of  values  he  shares  his  It does not matter whether this commentary  i s on the part of the narrator or on the part of his characters.  with  The " r e l i a b i l i t y "  of  the  secondary  commentary depends not  13 upon  proximity  already  to  the  prepared  in  author the  but  text  upon  by  the  commentary of Panurge, f o r i n s t a n c e , Quart L i v r e ( f o l l o w i n g through  irony:  one  during  the  tempest  Livre)  and  his  taken  of  the  the  the  the  as  that  author.  i n the  his  of  The  in  Homenaz a r e  therefore  scruples the  meant  at  i t runs  the  Livre)  Tier3 to  r e f l e c t i o n s of  commentary,  "unreliable":  in  Tier3  religious  episode  negative  Panurge's  (and  Quart  Xenomanes)  tell  a  a  nothing  (the  form p a r t  Livre  to  the  of  the  be the  level  contrary  implied  structured  is still  the  of  shorter  larger  Dindenault, of  is  multiplicity  number  the p r i m a r y n a r r a t o r  and  pattern  praise  reader  "territory"  to  reader's)  perspective.  whereby  still  implied  Raminagrobis  therefore  narrative  narratives  sure  the  author's  Although  w h i c h add  be  attitude.  is  implied  ideological  (cf.  by  author's story,  can  moral  functions negatively  negative  half-hearted  ironically  implied  the  the  a  framework  narrators  (Panurge,  "detachable"  narratives  "quest"  narrative,  important. Tempest,  as  the  role  Some i m p o r t a n t and  primary narrative.  Andouilles Who  of  shorter stories)  i s thi3  what i s h i s f u n c t i o n i n m e d i a t i n g i m p l i e d a u t h o r and  narrator implied  reader?  We  have  already  seen  the Q u a r t L i v r e p r e s e n t s a  doctor,  becoming  (re)telling  the  that  himself  the  author,  Prologue  to  i n o r a l s t y l e i n the p e r s o n a  of  i n e f f e c t a dramatised  Aesopian fable  in  the  narrator  of C o u i l l a t r i s ,  and  who  ends  using  in  by the  14  process  several  identifies  digressive  with  storyteller. 9  the in  techniques  rhetorical  the  text  which  Abraham  manipulation  proper  of  the  of  Quart  narrator i s an "eyewitness" of the f i c t i v e events:  Keller  the  oral  Livre  the  he takes no  s i g n i f i c a n t part i n the a c t i o n and does not i n t e r a c t with any of the  characters,  events  as  the  Andouilles,  but  is  nonetheless  drowning of  present,  Dindenault,  the  narrating conquest  of  et  the  the thawing of the frozen words and the k i l l i n g of  the monstrous whale by Pantagruel, as i f he had himself leu,  such  sceu"  (to  use  the  formula  from  the  "veu,  Prologue  the  Pantagruel) the events described.  At at l e a s t two points i n the Quart L i v r e — once on the i s l a n d of Ruach (Rabelais, 136), and once during the v i s i t the  Papimanes (Rabelais,  readers  as  154) — the narrator  "beuveurs," using the f a m i l i a r  from the Prologues.  addresses  formula of  to the  address  On one occasion, on the i s l a n d of Ennasin,  he even refers to "notre pays de vache" (54), a reference which l i n k s him to  the h i s t o r i c a l  Rabelai3  himself.  author d i s t i n c t i o n i s therefore quite f l u i d :  The n a r r a t o r -  the narrator f e e l s  free to address the readers as "beuveurs" j u s t a 3 the author of the Prologues does, and the reader might even assume that the author and  the narrator  are  the  same person.  The narrator  however never i d e n t i f i e s himself i n the Quart L i v r e , even under the pseudonym A l c o f r i b a s as i n the f i r s t author of the Prologues does.  two  book3,  though the  15 The  reader,  i n any  narrator,  cannot  dramatised  narrator,  liar.  good  A  chapter,  where  case,  fail  to  the  example the  though  he  notice  may  that,  confuse when  "author"  i s at  times  of  would  be  this  narrator protests  o b v i o u s l y the a u t h o r ' s f i c t i v e  the  invention,  author  and  "speaking"  as  an o s t e n t a t i o u s  the  thirty-eighth  veracity  of  what  is  the A n d o u i l l e s :  Vous t r u p h e z i c i , B e u v e u r s , e t ne c r o y e z que a i n s i 3 o i t en v e r i t 6 comme j e vous r a c o n t e . J e ne s c a u r o i s que v o u s en f a i r e . Croyez l e , s i voulez; 3 i ne v o u l e z , a l l e z y v o i r . M a i s j e s c a y b i e n ce que j.e v e i d z . (Rabelais,125)  It  seems a3  narrator  appear  though  the  "unreliable"  c o n n i v e t o g e t h e r "behind creating, a  kind  producing  dramatic  a  "comic  so  author  that  t h e b a c k " of  here as w e l l as of  implied  i n the  irony,  case  which  atmosphere,"  chooses  reader  t o make h i s  and  author  the n a r r a t o r , of  so t o  the cursed  again  speak,  misreaders,  contributes  a n atmosphere  of  may  toward  ambiguity  and  irony.  The irony"  the  bravado  implied  cowardice  attribute author;  and  reader  c r e a t e d by  i n t h r e e ways i n t h e Q u a r t  ironically;  who  author  c h a r a c t e r s , as  Panurge'3  those  of  occurs i n f a c t  against of  connivance  the  secondly, heresy and  Livre:  f o r i n s t a n c e where t h e  during  to  against the  thirdly,  a g a i n s t the p r i m a r y n a r r a t o r .  tempest, the  and  cursed  perhaps  first,  reader,  takes  "folatrie3  "dramatic  his  ensuing  misreaders,  joyeuse3" most  aware  of  the  important,  16  One must therefore not only distinguish in the case of the author between "implied author" and "dramatised narrator," but also,  in the case of the reader, between "implied reader" and  "narrative audience."  Although the dramatised narrator appeals  loudly to his "narrative audience" that they should believe his story of the Andouilles, the implied author obviously expect  his  author's  "implied reader"  narrator is  in  fact  to  "believe  it  impersonating  doe3  really." a  not The  story-telling  ("lying") charlatan of the foire (familiar from the Prologue to the Pantagruel),  thereby rendering himself  ridiculous in the  eyes of the implied reader, who in turn impersonates a credulous listener  (reader), that is, accepts the premise of the fiction  without for an instant accepting i t a3 real or reliable.  Thus the author of the Prologue of 1548, who characterises his  stories as  "folatries  joyeuses" in order to deflect  the  misreading of those who impart heresy to his work, is completely different  from the dramatised narrator, who renders himself  ridiculous by insisting on the l i t e r a l truth of one of his most outrageous  stories,  the Andouilles story.  It  i3  a role, a  persona that the author takes on in order to interact comically with a reader who is role.  equally ready to take on a provisional  Narrative audience and dramatised narrator interact under  a consciously fictive premise, roles:  as if  they were both "acting"  implied author and implied reader have in fact created  fictional  personae  for  themselves,  conscious of their dissimulation.  all  the  while  highly  A comic atmosphere is thus  17  created,  p a r t l y through aesthetic  reader both remain disengaged willingness  author and  3ince  emotionally,11 hut also  to play a game,  ("take seriously")  distance,  3ince,  though  through  they never  believe  for an instant their own pretense, they are  s t i l l w i l l i n g to play their roles ostentatiously.  The  author i n the Quart Livre has thus chosen:  to be s i l e n t , any  not  but through an abundance of commentary, to destroy  illusion  ideological  first,  of  objective  biases;  "reality,"  secondly,  to  while  create  revealing  through a  his  kind  of  dramatic irony complicity with his "postulated" readers, so that often the  the  communication of  tone,  style  exclusion  of  misreaders, back"  of  and  interpretation)  either  or this  his essential attitude  a  character  even his  narrator;  excluded  third  invitation  to  ostentatious  readers.  The whole  atmosphere  where no attempt  of  party  is  dependent  (Panurge),  to  is  is  impersonate The  in a  fact  simply an  cultivate on the  technique  results  made to  "convince"  invitation  to  upon  "behind a  the  in  a  the  his comic  reader  The f i c t i v e  the  reader just as an author impersonates  the  constant  part of  through verisimilitude of the r e a l i t y of anything. premise  key to  hypocritical  and t h i r d l y ,  "role-playing" his  (the  reader  to  an author.  ground of the interaction of reader and author i s  therefore  18 "falsehood"  rather  ostentatious  liar,  him.  than while  "truth." the  The  author  plays  reader only pretends  to  an  believe  The author does not want his reader to believe him;  the contrary, the comic effect of h i 3 impersonation of the depends to a large believe. game,  Thus,  extent upon the  the ground of  reader's  tacit  interaction,  the  between author and reader, depends on a refusal  reader's part to effect  to  be  "suspend disbelief."  realised,  the  reader  liar  refusal  rules  on  of  to the  on the  In order for the comic must  approach  the  text  conscious of playing his role i n the 3ame way that the author i s conscious of playing his.  Thus, through reader,  having attempted  examining we  find  the  that  the  "reality"  of  his  answer  the  question  "inter subjectivity "12 the  trying to convince his  to  implied  author  0  f  of  author  i n Rabelais  neither  fictive  His a r t i s t i c  realistic,  is  reader, through hiding his a r t i f i c e , creation.  Nor primarily i s  trying to produce i n his reader id ent i f i c a t i o n with his characters.  genre  method  nor dramatic.  of  fictive  and not of he  fictive  presentation  is  The ground of interaction of  author and reader i s not "truth," imitation of real l i f e through concealment  of  artifice  probability,  but  or  "falsehood,"  r i d i c u l o u s l y deformed f i c t i v e of  role-play.  i n the 3ense  Clearly, that  production highly premises  of  conscious  belief  through  acceptance  of  i n the comic atmosphere  t h i 3 form of writing i s  "non-mimetic,"  the line of demarcation between f i c t i o n and  19  reality fiction  i s  clearly  highly  constructs  drawn  for  the  self-consciously  for himself,  t h a t of  the  reader, in  a  who  experiences  fictional  credulous  listener.  role  the he  20  Chapter  II.  Let  us  narrative "comic"  by  of  assume  continue  in  response  Quart  the  of  to  bound  of t h e  we  i s not  into  of  the  the  who  the  i t s kind": up  with  the  specify  the  ways  "purpose"  response of  the  Rabelai3  Aristotle,  "entelechy"  proper  First,  Livre into  example  t h e D e s i r e of t h e Reader  inquiry  catharsis,  that  necessarily  our  inquiry  the the  "pleasure  author  the  an  Following terms  L i t e r a r y Form and  be  considered  of  the  narrative.  the  Quart  "tragedy"  reader,  Livre  question  question  the  can  defined  of  the  i n which  of  we  in will  produces  of  the  "purpose"  "pleasure,"  i3 the  reader.  must  writing.  purely discursive  We  f o r which  the  c a n assume t h a t h i s p u r p o s e  the  "living  plot"  imitated  in  in  identification continue pleasure  to  the  to  i n the  reader  the  identification,  us  produce  attempting sense,13 a  not  the the  that  this  pleasure  pleasure  doe3 of  a  universe  Nevertheless  pleasure  i n t h e r e a d e r , and  construct  closed  writing  but p l e a s u r e nonetheless.  assume  a  to  cathartic  (audience).  inductively)  reader,  t h i s p l e a s u r e produced  Let  i 3 not  Aristotelian  order  proceed  in  he  simply  a  r e a d e r of a s e r i e s of p r o p o s i t i o n s , he would n o t have c h o s e n Secondly,  wanted  i 3 not  the  form.  i f he had  implied  to convince  fictive  one:  purpose  of  ( l e t us produce cathartic  What i s t h e n a t u r e  of  whence d o e s i t come?  i s more  than  simply  an  21  "aesthetic"  one i n the  forms and f e l i c i t o u s 3ake. "  Let us  formalist  phrases and images,  examine  the kind  Rabelais as though i t satisfied know (the most Aristotle);  sense,  of  the  contemplation of  language  "for i t s  own  writing we encounter  in  basic human wishes: the wish to  "natural" and preeminent of wishes according to  and the wish to judge.  This may be a better way to  proceed, i n view of the real public of the Quart Livre and their "horizon  of  expectation,"14  i  n  other  words,  the  historical  situation of the text.  First,  let  us  dramatic comedy,  recall briefly  where  the  the  general  principles  of  "pleasure proper to  the genre"  is  produced more c l e a r l y than i n comic narrative, and see how human wishes are g r a t i f i e d pleasurably there. theory,  where  "reader  literary  genre,  tendency  to  laughter."15  comic  imitate  response" writers "lower  has are  In A r i s t o t e l i a n poetic p r i o r i t y i n determining  "meaner  characters  in  spirits" order  to  with  a  incite  Thus for A r i s t o t l e characterisation, and not p l o t ,  i s the essential  element i n dramatic comedy producing the comic  effect on the audience, whereas i n tragedy i t i s plot which has priority. of  AI30 i n dramatic comedy, because of the  the stage,  limitations  rules of verisimilitude must be respected not i n  order that the audience should sympathise with the but rather i n order that the audience  characters,  should be surprised by  22 comic  r e v e r s a l s i n the p l o t .  dramatic dernesure lest  comedy  is  Of  basically  t h e m o r a l framework i n  conservative:  ( T a r t u f f e , Arnolphe)  the p i t y  course,  i s punished,  of t h e a u d i e n c e  be  the  archetype  but not  too s e v e r e l y ,  aroused.  ¥ h e r e h a v e t h e s e e l e m e n t s gone i n comic n a r r a t i v e , the  Quart  Livre  i s an  example?  does not  conform  to  same  comedy.  The  only  the  the  i m a g i n a t i o n of  the  the  reader.  have seen,  not  p r e s c r i b e or determine  reading  a  As  aesthetic  experience,  t h e p a r t of  is  addressed  credulous  of  the  by  audience,  of  work  reader, is  thus  of  in  the  of  credulity  of  than  a a  fact  dramatic collective,  interpretive  i n R a b e l a i s the  plural:  the  the  role  maintained. is  of  work  reader  participatory play  Thus  of  the  the  camouflaged  real  in  the  role-play.  his  asked  role  of  credulous  i n Rabelais events:  mouth, and  or N a n t e s ,  rather  reader  those  very physical  individualised  is  dramatic  are  attending  therefore  narrative  ( v e r i s i m i l i t u d e ) doe3  The  than  of w h i c h  as  provisional  Nevertheless  and  improbable  Pantagruel's  Rouen  thus  audience  collective  provisionally, giant  foire  limitations  probability  individual,  reader.  narrative  individualised  The  the  the n a r r a t o r i n the  the  n a r r a t i v e as  and  anything.  and  a l l , comic  i n comic n a r r a t i v e  rather  i m p l i e s an  on  fiction  we  of  physical  author  narrative,  presentation,  First  limitations  of  to  the  participant  accept  in  the  completely,  yet  narrator's entering  d i s c o v e r i n g there c i t i e s  i n t h e Pan t a g rue 1;  the  the  s l a u g h t e r by  the size  Frere  23  Jean  of  detail,  i n c r e d i b l e numbers in  the  of  Gargantua.  P i c r o c h o l e ' s men i n  Narrative  form,  graphic  a 3 opposed  to  dramatic form, i n v i t e s hyperbole i n the comic or parodie mode, and  leads  quite  characters. find  naturally  the  gigantism  of  Rabelais'  Instead of the comic archetypes of dernesure that we  i n dramatic  specimens  to  of  Pantagruel.  comedy, we find  dernesure  that  are  It  as  though  seem3  i n Rabelais the Grandgousier, i n the  "physical"  Gargantua,  and  comic n a r r a t i v e  of  Rabelais, n a r r a t i v e imagination d e l i g h t s i n v i o l a t i n g the l i m i t s of b e l i e f .  The author d e l i g h t s i n " l y i n g "  comically drawing a t t e n t i o n  outrageously,  thus  to h i s power as a narrator and to  the "written" character of h i s f i c t i o n .  There  remains  another  type  of  character  in  Rabelais,  p a r t i c u l a r l y i n the t h i r d and fourth books.  This i s the  represented  the  by Frere Jean and by Panurge,  former  type being  marked p r i m a r i l y by h i s warlike courage and voracious a p p e t i t , and  the  indecision  latter  by  his  (Tiers L i v r e ) ,  This type of character,  mischievousnes3 or by h i s  (Pantagruel),  cowardice (Quart  may change,  characterisation  is  at  Livre).  c a l l e d i n the 18th century a "humour,"  i s d i s t i n g u i s h e d by one t r a i t and one t r a i t only. 16 trait  his  any  still  one  moment  in  the  Though the  narrative  dominated by one t r a i t  at  a  the time.  Just as a s i n g l e t r a i t represents the character flaw leading to the comic r e s o l u t i o n of L' Avare or Le Misanthrope of Moliere, for  instance,  so  also  does  a  single  trait  function  a3 a  24  character  flaw  Rabelais. in  in  the  comic narrative  of  the Quart Livre of  In the third and fourth books of Rabelais, more than  the f i r s t two books,  t h i 3 single t r a i t ,  say for instance  the  cowardice of Panurge, has "moral implications."  One Livre,  might even say that i f it  i 3 an ideological  mediocritas,  there i s any unity i n the Quart  unity,  since i t  is  the  theme of  e x p l i c i t i n the C o u i l l a t r i s 3tory i n the Prologue,  which forms the moral backdrop, not only to the Tempest story, but also the Lord of Ba3che and Dindenault stories, and al30  to  the  of  visit  to  the  Papimanes  episode  and  anatomy  Quaresmeprenant.  The Me3ser Gaster episode i s perhaps the most  "emblematic"  of  this  undisguised  contempt  manifestation of  Assuming  theme  of  moderation:  for  the  the  narrator's  is  Gastrolatre3  a  clear  this.  that  characterisation,  and  not  plot,  i 3 the  essential narrative element through which the  comic effect  obtained,  i.e.,  are  pleasurably  gratified,  to  two  classes  characters  correspond?  especially  through what  which  human wishes  human wishes I  would  do  these  suggest  that  the  is  of  giant3,  i n the "apprenticeship" or "education" cycles i n the  f i r s t two books, 3eem to correspond to, or to function comically through,  the  reader's  need  to  know;  whereas the  "humours,"  predominant i n the third and fourth Books, function through the reader's need to judge. of  As i n the f i r s t two books the education  Pantagruel and Gargantua lay open to the reader's  curiosity  25  the branches of medieval and humanistic knowledge, and  i n the third  fourth books the positive ideological content (following the  Erasmian  model)  is  no  longer  simply  presented  naively  and  exuberantly, but an appeal i s made to the reader's moral sense, an  appeal which r e l i e s  upon the moral authority of antiquity:  the p r i n c i p l e of stoic moderation. of  The r e t e l l i n g of the fable  C o u i l l a t r i s i n the Prologue, i n spite of i t s v i v i d digressive  meanderings, ends with a moral: Soubhaitez done mediocrity: e l l e vous adviendra; et, encore mieulx, deuement ce pendent labourans et travaillan3.  (Rabelais,  28)  Thus the cowardice of Panurge, the fanaticism of Homenaz, the  idolatry  of  the  Quaresmeprenant become  Gastrolatres, ridiculous to  and  the  "unnatural"  the postulated  reader of  Rabelais, to a public sharing the ideological perspective of the implied  author.  The  reader's  pleasurably through r i d i c u l e . in  Rabelais has  to  by  its  judge  is  gratified  Laughter, which up to this point  been dominated by i t s  becomes dominated exuberance of  need  critical  positive  function,  content,  and  the  now  joyful  the f i r s t two books t a k e 3 on, i n the Quart Livre  (as i n the Tiers L i v r e ) , a more s p e c i f i c a l l y s a t i r i c tone.  The  purpose of the author's communication however with the  reader i n the Quart Livre i s never reduced to mere polemic.  The  author's  how  "coloured"  intention it  is  in  a  work  ideologically,  of is  fiction,  no  almost  never  matter purely  to  26  persuade  the  reader,  but  to  evoke  predictable aesthetic response.  i n him a  (more  The ideological  of author and reader i s assumed, not posited,  less)  common ground  i n order that  reader might experience the f i c t i o n pleasurably.  the  A 3 i n tragedy,  where fear and p i t y are evoked i n order to dissipate and pleasurably i n the cathartic resolution,  or  harmlessly  i n comic narrative  also the appeal to the reader's judgement i 3 made only i n order to  facilitate  attempting  a  pleasurable  in  The  author  is  the  reader  he i s only assuming a certain ideological in  order  to  realise  his  comic  purpose.  Polemic i s absorbed by comic v i s i o n , and not vice-versa. the  two  not  to arouse the indignation of the reader i n order to  arouse him to action; bias  effect.  Kantian  purposiveness  conditions  for  (Zwe ckmassiqkeit)  (Zwecklosigkeit).  art  are  and  Thus  maintained:  purposelessness  The reader's need to exercise his free moral  judgement i 3 exercised,  but only to be dissipated harmlessly i n  the comic.  Thus,  though i n the  Quart Livre  the  effect  is  achieved  through the reader'3 need to know and need to judge, the reader i s not however motivated by a need for information or a need to exercise  h i 3 moral  metaphors  in  the  judgement anatomy  of  a3  such.  The  Quaresmeprenant  catalogue and  gamut  of of  culinary terminology i n the Andouilles and Gastolatres episodes do not  represent  a  useful  recapitulation which  answers  the  reader's need for information, nor are the various examples of d erne sure i n the Quart Livre meant for the  edification of  the  27  reader i n the fulfillment of his r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s .  The author  simply exploits the ideological consensus of his readers — that cowardice  is  shameful,  reprehensible,  that  religious  that an excess of asceticism  hypocrisy  is  i s unnatural — i n  order to achieve h i 3 comic effect.  The question of purpose of the author's communication with the reader i n the Quart Livre,  therefore,  as with a l l works of  f i c t i o n without external "use" i 3 bound up with the question of form. the  The reader's natural human wishes, wish  order  to  to  judge,  serve  are aroused  purposes  external to i t .  For form,  as Kenneth Burke puts  it,  the wish to know and  (exploited)  internal  to  the  and f u l f i l l e d work  of  art,  in not  i n l i t e r a t u r e as i n the other arts, is  "the arousal and fulfillment  of  desire."17  Assuming that  the creation of l i t e r a r y form i n the Quart  Livre i s a "response" on the part of the implied author to the anticipated reactions apparent  that  expectations verisimilitude  the in  of an envisioned reader, author  two  ways.  i 3 working First,  against  the  the  reader's  "pattern  reality,  a3 we have seen.  of  the  reveals  experience"  Secondly,  soon becomes reader's  deliberate  i n characterisation and plot  against  it  or  lack  of  a working sense  of  the author seems to be  working against the l i t e r a r y conventions of heroic romance, that is,  working against  expectations  of  naive  readers  of  heroic  28  romances.  A3 Jean Paris (among others) shows,18 the  five  cycles of  heroic romance form the l i t e r a r y "background." to the five books of  Rabelais:  correspond  whereas  to  respectively,  the  the  Pantagrue1  "apprenticeship"  and  and  the  "childhood"  reader of  the Quart Livre  and,  the  against That  is  cycles  the third and fourth books correspond roughly to  the "quest" and "noble deeds" ("prouesses") cycles.  like  Gargantua  reader of  is  aware  of  Don Quixote,  these  The implied  correspondences,  measures what he  reads  expectations generated by the genre of heroic romance. to  say,  the  author,  working  negatively  against  expectations of naive readers of heroic romances, produces comic effect i n a reader who i s anything but naive (but who pretends to be naive, as we have shown) through parodying the  conventions  of heroic romance.  Aside from the Tempest and Andouilles episodes, which have antecedents not only i n the heroic romance but also i n c l a s s i c a l and b i b l i c a l l i t e r a t u r e s , a clear example of this kind of parody i n the Quart Livre i s monster,  is  described,  throwers of antiquity, comparaison  without  "physetere,"  by Pantagruel i n the thiry-fourth chapter:  Pantagruel"  sans  the slaying of the  touching  plus the  after  a  li3t  of  several  or  sea-  "Le noble javelin-  as "en l ' a r t de jeter et de darder amirale," shells'  capable  edges,  of  of  opening  turning the  oysters pages of  29  Frere  Jean'3 breviary "l'un apres  (Rabelais, 115).  1'autre  sans rien desirer"  Taken naively, i n spite of this hyperbole, the  ensuing exemplary drag on-slaying type of episode might seem to be an account by an admiring narrator of a p a r t i c u l a r l y noble deed of  the hero Pantagruel.  much of the  rest  Read by the reader postulated by  of the text,  however,  i t would be seen as a  parody of an admiring account of a noble and chivalrous deed. The  Medamothi episode,  "rhetorical" Pantagruel,  letters might  be  with i t s  exchange of  between  father  read  "straight,"  gifts  and highly  Gargantua were  it  and  not  son  for  the  description of the g i f t s themselves: Epistemon en achapta un aultre, on quel estoient a u 3 3 i painctes les Idees de Platon, et les Atomes de Epicurus. Rhizotome en achapta un on quel estoit Echo selon le naturel representee. (Rabelai3,  Thus the Livre seem3  type  of  comic writing encountered  to work negatively,  "against  the reader's "pattern of experience" secondly,  against naive readers'  literary  genre,  however,  requires a minimum of  the  heroic  33)  i n the Quart  the grain," f i r s t of  or sense of r e a l i t y ;  and  expectations associated with a  romance. positive  Human  communication,  polarity,  a sort  of  consensus between sender and receiver, i n order for a message to be comprehensible.  Although, on the one hand, the creation of  l i t e r a r y form i n the Quart Livre seems to work negatively terms  of  reader's  "positively"  in  experience  one  respect  and  expectations,  — ideologically.  it  in  does work  The implied  30  author assumes that his  reader shares his values and  that his reader "takes his side" atmosphere  in  which  Quaresmeprenant, w i l l not be  the  i n the h i s t o r i c a l l y "charged"  text  i 3 written.  the Papimanes,  beliefs,  Certainly,  and even the Tempest  the  episodes  "received" properly by a reader who does not,  at  least provisionally, share the author's point of view i n regard to r e l i g i o n , society and culture at a time when (in contrast the  grand  a  3iecle)  social  3trong  consensus  and  a  to  common  ideology did not exist.  The  historical  shed l i g h t effect  of  the Quart Livre does indeed  on the author" s strategy for procuring his  through his  tragedies  "situation"  of  l i t e r a r y art.  Racine and the  Whereas,  comedies of  for  a transitional period l i k e  the 16th century,  and  rely  such as  a  Rabelai3  "new"  which r e l i e s  such  the a r t i s t 3 of  Montaigne's case, this led to the creation of an entirely essay,  on  on a  In  the  not  the  consensus.  genre,  could  instance,  Moliere relied  strong social consensus to achieve their effects,  Montaigne,  desired  midway between autobiography and  upon self-disclosure,  artistic  unity.  Rabelais,  himself,  but instead  to  however,  the autoportrait, prefers  not  to  treatise, for  its  disclose  work through an unreliable narrator,  working against outmoded l i t e r a r y convention through parody, and addressing himself to a reader alienated from a social consensus which he (the reader) experiences a3 repressive.  Unlike  in  Montaigne,  i n Rabelai3  one  does not  find  an  31  author  searching  for  a  new  consensus  autoportrait of the "universal" self. a new language  i n order  to  through  painting  the  Instead of searching for  create a new consensus,  assumes that his reader already shares his values.  Rabelais  He then sets  about to achieve his comic effects through setting up characters for  r i d i c u l e (like Dindenault and the C h i q u a n o u 3 ) by having them  violate  a pre-existent code already accepted by his  postulated  reader.  If  language  is  communication through symbols,  and i f ,  as  Kenneth Burke says,19 a r t i s t 3 divide into two groups:  those who  seek to conquer a reading public through discovering  effective  symbols (Montaigne, Rousseau), ideological  consensus  by  and those who seek to exploit an  making  symbols  effective,  Rabelais  certainly belongs (with Racine and Moliere) i n the second group.  We discover,  then,  that  the  type  of  characterisation and  plot i n the Quart Livre presents us with a negativity, against  the  deliberate discover  reader's  experience  and  expectations  lack of verisimilitude and parody. a  commonality  positive of  implied  factor author  in  f a c i l i t a t e s predictable comic effects. form i s  thus s t i l l  reader's  response,  seen as the  the  and  and  through  Nevertheless,  assumed  implied  we  ideological  reader,  which  The creation of l i t e r a r y  "author's response"  "arousal  a working  to  fulfillment  anticipated of  desire,"  where the work appeals through the reader's natural desires:  to  know a n d  to  judge  33  Chapter III.  By  P o r t r a i t of the Reader i n the Quart Livre  distinguishing  "implied  reader"  from  "narrative  audience," and "implied author" from "dramatised narrator," we saw  that  encountered  the  expectations  in  Rabelais's  generated Quart  by  Livre  the  led  comic  to  an  writing emotional  distance on the part of the implied reader which undermines t h i 3 reader's i d e n t i f i c a t i o n and the verisimilitude of character and event  (or  pentad ) 20  "agent" and "act," to use the i n the  narrative.  terms of the Burkean  We saw this  through noting  the  divergences of effects on the reader from those generated by the r e a l i s t i c or "dramatic" modes of f i c t i v e presentation, where the i l l u s i o n s of r e a l i t y (mimesis) i s important i n order to achieve the  aesthetic  effect  which  is  sought  (catharsis,  identification).  The implications still  remain  narratives  to  of  be  the  of  these divergent generic  analysed  Quart  and  Livre,  illustrated  structured,  as  expectations through it  is,  the as  a  framework narrative.  A.  Reader's Interest and Digression:  Since most Genette21)  narratologies  (and  the C o u i l l a t r i s Story  especially  that  of  Gerard  analyse narrative from the perspective of grammatical  34  aspect  (person,  relation their  of  or  narrative  perspective  "temps n a r r e " and  example  and  begin  n a r r a t i v e s of t h e Q u a r t  "temps r e e l , "  by  examining  Livre.  of a l l , i n e x a m i n i n g  Couillatris  story,  tendency as  to d i g r e s s .  "parenthetical."  Couillatris  The of  scene  to  ¥e  set  hatchet, a  the  of  "coign6e"  where  At  begins  this  amid  on  to  the  by  examining  the  historical  confession  his  Pierre  the  a  request  "la  perplexity  Rameau  teste  for  and  cries  at  Pierre  the  lev6e,  of  rouge,  once done t o a dog  d i s p u t e between B a c c h u s and  Vulcan.  d i s t u r b a n c e s and  sending Vulcan e i t h e r  Jupiter,  afterthought,  as  an  3ends  in  Jupiter  international his  at  speech  turn both  events with  between  the  Priapus  i n the et  Mercury  asseuree"  other  or c l e a r to  in  matter.  "Pierres"  After noting  a the  Sorbonne  a fox i n order to  to s t i r  to  switches  Couillatris  flamboyante  and  depends  abruptly  controversy  Galand  advice  loss  heavens  ends  the  the  the  of  2 0 ) , recommends t h a t J u p i t e r  s t o n e , a s he had  w h i c h he  p o i n t , the scene  importance.  of  e a r t h ) by  implore  Jupiter  a  Prologue,  "inventrice  of  (Rabelai3,  the  the  the  with various  Priapus,  will  being  enumerates h i 3 p r e o c c u p a t i o n s  and  the  c h a r a c t e r i s e these d i g r e s s i o n s  Necessity  Couillatris  heaven,  Paris  of  short narrative,  ("here below" on  living.  return h i s hatchet.  scholars  l e t us f o l l o w  " s y n t a x , " we  c o u l d b e n e f i t , perhaps,  is first  earn  d'Eloquence,"  to  could  view,"  "grammar"  with  most  of  3tory i n detail.  Couillatris'  order  One  etc.),  the f i r s t  occupies  "point  the  Beginning  notice f i r s t  which  or  find  into  settle civil  them out  up, what  35  Couillatris in  want3, s i n c e h i s i n s i s t a n t  t h e meantime n o t e s  (to  l e t s pass  proceeds  (mentule)  f o r a l a p s u s , s i n c e he meant t o s a y  "memoire"  to demonstrate by  beurrier"  reciting  mieux v o u s c o i g n e r " i s g i v e n f r e e with laughter, l i k e  The  primary  Couillatris  i3  and  his  chooses  his  own  His  envious  punished  a  own  of  of  mecliocres"  He  (of m u s i c i a n s ) s a n s manche",  The  we  out  wood  and  get  The  i n a l l simplicity,  "choses  reign.  —  t r y to  decapitation.  lists  "coignee  hatchets  wood  hatchet  [ R a b e l a i s , 23]).  gods and  and  "pour  goddesses  "microcosme de mouches" ( R a b e l a i s ,  three  neighbours  by  should a l l , than  two  s t o r y i s resumed:  offered  silver,  "coignee"  member  poem3, where t h e p l a y on words  respond  Priapus  t h e v a r i o u s m e t a p h o r i c a l u s e s of  ("grande a s s e z p o u r e m p l i r un p o t  24).  continue.  d e s i g n a t e male member) and brag3 of h i s own  w h i c h he  two  cries  r e t u r n t o e a r t h , where -.of  is  of  gold,  sheer  one  of  obstinacy,  he  rewarded  rich  moral  one  the  is  with  same  then  way  riches. and  are  presented:  we  wish nothing b e t t e r f o r ourselves  (Rabelais,  27),  the  best  example  of  w h i c h i s good h e a l t h .  We of  can  see,  Couillatris  first and  of a l l ,  hi3  t h a t the p r i m a r y  hatchet,  digressive parenthesis, beginning including  the  metaphorical  Rameau-Galand  connotations  of  is with  story  narrative,  interrupted the  and  "coignee."  scene  Priapus'  by  a  that long  i n heaven,  and  expos6  the  of  What i s t h e f u n c t i o n of  this parenthesis?  First,  one  should  keep  in  mind  the  context  of  the  36 narrative:  the Prologue of 1552,  which, as we 3howed i n the  f i r s t chapter, asks the reader to imagine the author groping for his glasses after having been interrupted i n h i 3 study, up  a scene i n which the  "telling"  "telling," and not a "writing." written  character  author c i t e 3  his  of  the  the  story  Nevertheless,  fiction  source:  of  Aesop,  is  is  setting indeed a  the "original"  highlighted,  since  whom he claims i s  the  really a  Frenchman, since the French are descendants of the Phrygians the Trojans (a commonplace repeated throughout the Prologues). are  asked  to  "retelling"  believe  that  (though written)  Aesopian fable.  the  Couillatris  in a  (false)  stroy  is  We  thus  "oral" mode of  a an  The narrative audience i 3 c l e a r l y evoked 3 i n c e  the author has already addressed them d i r e c t l y i n his role a3 author-dramatised narrator, the bellicose personnage groping for his glasses.  The presents  "rhetorical situation" of itself  as  that  of  the C o u i l l a t r i s  an oral  storyteller,  Keller 3hows i n his detailed analysis. 22 of the  mise en abyme of this story i t s e l f :  microcosme reflects  de the  the  mouches" presumed  story as  thus  Abraham  w notice also a sort e  storyteller/audience  situation within  god3 and goddesses laughing l i k e at  the  witticism  amusement  of  of  the  Priapus.  "un This  Prologue-author"s  narrative audience, which, as we showed i n the f i r s t chapter, a  result  reader.  of  detached  role-play  on the  part  of  the  is  implied  By a sort of mimicry, Priapus' joking about the double-  37  meaning of  "coignee"  reflects  the  rhetorical situation of  oral s t o r y t e l l e r i n the Prologue:  i t i s the audience's  which i s  i n the  the  digression. seems  to  determining factor  simply  to  sustain  the  interest  amplification of  The function of the parenthesis, be  itself  a fiction,  since  "reader's  the tale  the  the "digression," interest,"  "entertain" the crowd, the c o l l e c t i v e audience of an oral which i s  the  to  tale,  is  written and the  we have not  said very much.  audience i 3 i n fact the reader.  Having Realistic  however,  and dramatic presentation avoid digression  same reason: must l i e ,  thi3,  3aid  to sustain the reader's interest.  not  i n the objective  stylistic  for. the  The difference  feature,  but i n the  subjective factor brought about by generic expectations i n the reader:  the nature of the "reader's interest"  created  itself.  The answer seems to be that "reader's interest," being, as we have seen, detached from i d e n t i f i c a t i o n with the characters and essentially  "disbelieving" i n terms of the verisimilitude of  the events, i s not directed t e l e o l o q i c a l l v toward the outcome of the  story.  For  instance,  narrative i n the Quart Livre, of  Panurge's marriage,  Bacbuc,  etc.,  the  the  "outcome"  of  the  the intrigue around the question reason for  seeking  has been e n t i r e l y forgotten:  it  the  question  analepse,  of  etc.,  using  suspense,  foreshadowing,  i n order to create  a sense of  oracle of  i 3a  conclusion with absolutely no interest for the reader. no  framework  foregone There i s  prolepse the  and  inevitable  38 fulfillment of the reader's worst fears, as with tragedy, or of meting out blame or j u s t i f i c a t i o n , a 3 i n the detective novel or even i n the r e a l i s t i c novel, as i f the reader were a jury i n a forensic proceeding.  The  "digression" i n fact  comic writing:  "brackets" the passage of time i n  the deferral of the outcome of a story does not  produce suspense, because the reader's interest i s not wholly i n the "future," but instead i 3 placed squarely i n the "present" of the writing.  The digressions  i n the C o u i l l a t r i s  scene among the gods,  the Rameau-Galand story,  of  semiosis  Priapus  over  the  interrupt a story which ha3 argument about " m 6 d i o c r i t e , " or The  "seriousness"  of  story — the  the —  "coign6e"  speculation though  they  the status of exemplum i n a moral also  reduce whatever "importance"  that the Aesopian fable i t s e l f  could have had.  Priapus-Jupiter dialogue effectively places  the C o u i l l a t r i s  affair affair,  beside  the  among  infinitely  others,  thus  more  "important" Rameau-Galand  bracketing  and  relativi3ing  it.  C o u i l l a t r i s himself resembles a sort of peasant buffoon, and his moral  choice  resolution.  is  the  result  The "hero" of  more the  of  story  stupidity  than  i 3 effectively  whose wit and erudition i n the matter of the  of  stoic  Priapus,  "coignee" v i v i d l y  render him the audacious possessor of verbose loquacity.  Where, therefore,  i s the interest of the reader?  not i n the outcome of the fable,  Cetainly  but i n the digression i t s e l f .  We can see how the story i s i n fact structured to accomodate the  39  generic expectations generated i n the reader, resulting i n a nonteleological  structure,  necessarily episodic  not  only  as  a  function  of  the  "framework narrative," but even within the  story i t s e l f .  Having digressive read  noted structure  further  tendency  thi3  towards  "non-teleological"  i n the C o u i l l a t r i s story,  i n the  Quart  Livre,  certain  we note,  uses  notably i n the Dindenault and Tempest stories. reconcile this with our model of  of  as we  suspense,  How are we to  "non-teleological"  structure?  F i r s t of a l l , we should realise that "non-teleological" does not mean for us that a story i n the comic writing of Rabelais does not have the "organic" unity of  "beginning, middle and end."  simply means that the reader's interest the  "future"  in  terms  of  "participation in") the f i c t i v e  Whereas,  for  example, on the  and  anything  forswears  analepse and prolepse, completely  linear  i s not directed towards  experience  of  (or  even  presentation.  Stendhal  entire attention i s thus  his  It  envisages  a  reader whos  "future" — "what happens next?" — resembling  digression,  ending up with a spare  development.  Rabelais  and  even  style i n almost  envisages  a  reader  whose interest i s not i n "what happens next," but rather, i f not in  "what  writing,  is  now,"  at  least  in  the  "now"  of  the  i n commentary and textual comparison, enumeration and  cataloguing, gratified  happening  among  other  things.  through digression,  where  This  reader  can only  secondary narratives  be al30  40  occasionally appear as a part of the commentary of characters on the action,  as with the Lord of Basche story of Panurge during  the v i s i t to the Chiquanous.  B.  The "monde a l'envers":  The next story  of  Dindenault and the Chiguanous  real comic effectiveness  i n the Quart  Livre, the Dindenault story, seems to use "suspense" i n order to heighten the vividness of the outcome of the story, the drowning of  Dindenault  Dindenault, glasses,  abrasive  sheep  seeing Panurge without  merchant his  with  his  braguette  sheep.  and wearing  loudly insults him by c a l l i n g him a "coqu," i n i t i a t i n g  a dialogue provides  the  with Panurge where  an  opportunity  for  the  situation  hyperbole  and  of  buying sheep  enumeration  on  Dindenault's part, a parody of the popular l i n g u i 3 t c v i r t u o s i t y of the charlatan of the foire.  Panurge"s secret instructions to Frere Jean and Epistemon: Retirez vous i c y un peu a l ' e c a r t , et joyeusement passez temps a ce que voirez. II y aura bien beau jeu, s i l a chorde ne rompt. (Rabelais, 43)  seem  to  be  recommending  a to  reflection the  of  (implied)  what  the  reader.  (implied)  author  The "chorde"  or  is the  "trame" which the author seems to be "stretching out" i s i n fact the  web  which  "Patience";  Panurge's  monosyllabic  replies  ("Combien?";  "Voire") allow the verbose Dindenault to spin for  41  himself.  Panurge i s  today's argot,  i n fact,  to  borrow two  metaphors  from  "playing (Dindenault) l i k e a v i o l i n , " or "giving  him enough rope  to  hang himself."  Dindenault's  digressions,  which venture into domains such as the medical properties of the parts of sheep, serve to entrap him, to deprive him of the power of speech, and to reduce him to the status of a drowning man who mu3t l i s t e n to Panurge's demonstration: par lieux de Rethorique les  miseres  " . . . . l e u r remonstrant  de ce  monde....(Rabelais,  49)".  The deferral of produces a kind of in  the  sense  satisfaction identification reader's  punishment of  a  teleological  terms  and  Dindenault,  though  it  "suspense," does not r e a l l y create a "trame"  of in  the  of  in  (plot,  3torv  justification,  interest  deferral  outcome  etc.) and  of  a  reader's  characterisation,  but  instead  simply  suspends  surprises  him.  Panurge's action must appear as gratuitous and as unexpected as possible.  And  30, as  Panurge has  been  the  duplicitous  victim of  Dindenault's bombast, Dindenault suddenly becomes the victim of Panurge'3 bathos:  reversal of rapport of power, where "power"  is  speech.  the  power  of  Certainly  the  correspond to the punishment — drowning lacks  verisimilitude  standard.  or acceptability  The episode  has the  consciously and intentionally:  offense  does  not  the motif of revenge to  status of  the  reader  a game,  by any  quite  self-  just as Frere Jean and Epistemon  42  are told their  by Panurge to  time  joyfully,"  "retirez the  un peu a l ' e c a r t , "  reader  is  indeed  being  to "pa3s  invited  to  accept the seemingly cruel revenge i n f l i c t e d upon Dindenault as a  "passe-temps," a hobby,  having no  reference  to  any  code, no referent i n the social context of the reader. effectiveness of the scene may even depend,  social  The very  from a comic point  of view, on the very inversion of this accepted moral code: "monde  a  l'envers,"  "carnavalisation,"23  which  stems  from  the  the  operation  of  the key concept of Bakhtin so essential to  the understanding of the Rabelaisian "world."  Yet this "world," which not only does not imitate the world of  the  reader but  somehow also a  even inverts  function of  the  its  codes and  standards,  expectations generated  is  in  the  implied reader by the implied author i n this kind of writing. The  very  fact  that  the  restraints  of  verisimilitude,  i d e n t i f i c a t i o n and standards of moral j u s t i f i c a t i o n do not apply i n comic writing, since both reader and author i n a sense only pretend — "untrustworthy" narrator, i n this case, truth,  and  conditions  the for  reader the  to  believe  him  symbolic appeal of  —  the  to t e l l  creates  the  the very  imaginary world "a  1'envers. "  The v i s i t of  the  Lord of  commented  upon  to the Chiquanous, which gives rise to the  story  Basche narrated by Panurge, which i n turn by  a  tertiary  narrative,  that  of  is  "Maistre  43  Francois  Villon,"  i l l u s t r a t e s this the f i c t i v e  narrated by the  Lord  of  Basche  "monde a l'envers," which i 3 , as the result of  inversion of the social referent,  acting-out  of  himself,24  the  transgression  of  the  a sort of joyous  social  code.  The  "gentilhomme," i n danger of losing a l l he possesses and rotting in  prison "comme s ' i l  eu3t frappe le Roi" (Rabelais,60)  dares to lay a hand on the legal representative the b a i l i f f , For the  if  he  of the Crown,  finds i n the Lord of Basche his hero and example.  the Lord of Basche has found a remedy to the situation of sacrosainct  person  of  the  bailiff:  thanks  to  popular  custom, blows can be given during a marriage ceremony, and thus the b a i l i f f ,  provided that  there i s  a wedding,  can be  beaten  with impunity.  The  mock marriage ceremony i n the  Lord  of  Basche  3tory  provides the opportunity for "bailiff-bashing" forbidden i n the society of  the day.  The rhetorical appeal of  the 3tory  thus  resides i n the breaking of a taboo:  as i n the Carnival, where,  as  the  Bakhtin  the  show3,  travesty  of  "Pope of  fools"25  is  enacted, here the King i s mocked i n the person of his b a i l i f f . But  the  custom implied  condition for the (as  with  the  author and  structure  in  the  reader's  Carnival),  but  implied reader.  Couillatris  enjoyment  story  the As  of  this  "contract" the  stems  i 3 not between  non-teleological  from  an  envisaged  reader whose attention i s not on "what happens next," here the non-verisimilar story materials stem from the reader'3 "use" of  44  the  fiction  social  not  to  see  hierarchy.  relativises pleasure  i t :  of  the  the  himself  reflected  The  story  King  i n effect  reader  inverts  stem3  the  Couillatris  t e m p o r a l i t y and and  Lord  of  (Panurge  Ba3che  "Maistre  victim,  under  the  a  's  under  pretense  of  the  the  a  sheep,  play  the  —  there  takes  on  fiction  of  in  the an  Ba3che  a  sense.  intransigent authoritative of  f i c t i o n here as  which  i s nothing  the  facilitates  figure,  the  a  well the  joyou3  shoe  runaway  horse,  and  hi3  dismemberment  narrator, "gentleman,"  entangled  the  Lord  ends t h e  "tragicque  farce"  macabre d i m e n s i o n s of  left  and  similar  Dindenault  Lord  of  authority  foot  a  the  doubled  of  of the  right  enact  a l l  linear  C a r n i v a l - l i k e staging  his  lighthearted  of  bring  "causality,"  the  Passion  so  the  mistreatment of  scapegoating  The  the  punisher.  sacrifice:  detail.  v i c t i m , and  j o y o u s i n v e r s i o n of a power  "doubling"  of  and  to  the  mistreatment  same  the  code  effacement  structured  stoical  There i s a  punishment of  but  the  humiliation  Here  is  show,  buy  Villon"  the  travesty  violent  blood  stories  thus  reveals  Passion play. —  story  to  and  Francois  Tappecoue  thi3  in  dominated.  t o c e l e b r a t e a wedding) a  relationship,  social  thus c a u s a l i t y i n t o question,  pretending  pretending  the  appears as  from  d i f f e r e n c e between d o m i n a t o r and  A3  "mimetically"  of  of in  is  the the  poor  Basche,  s t o r y by  in  model  inciting  (Rabelais,  Tappecoue  3tirrup  described  65)  a  of  his  graphic of  h i s men against  the to the  45  bailiff3.  The term "tragicgue farce" i s i n fact appropriate to  designate  the  "bracketing" effect  of  l i t e r a r y genre upon such  story material, which, i n another kind of implied author/implied reader "situation," that of  r e a l i s t i c narrative, say,  could be  narrated unaltered with an opposite (tragic or cathartic) effect upon the reader.  The "bracketing" effect i s none other than the parody of a "tragic" f i c t i v e  "event," the event of a character, Tappecoue,  who becomes a "victim" due to his intransigence i n the matter of the  Passion Play to be  dressed as d e v i l 3 . in  fact  staged  by V i l l o n  and his  companions,  The grotesque dismemberment of Tappecoue i s  a parody of  the  "victimage"  achieve i t s cathartic effect:  employed by  tragedy  to  that i s why i t i s described as a  "tragicque farce" by the Lord of Basche.  C.  The Mimesis of Laughter:  We said, Rabelais i s  i n the f i r s t  chapter,  that the  comic writing of  "non-mimetic" i n the sense that i t does not enjoin  identification verisimilar  the Tempest Story  upon  humour3  the  reader,  (characters  but with  instead one  presents  overriding  nontrait)  resulting i n the g r a t i f i c a t i o n of the  reader'3 desire  and to judge the characters as objects,  since no attempt i s made  to present identity  them as subjects. i 3 replaced  with  Thus, a  to know  the mimetic p r i n c i p l e of  principle  of  difference.  46  Nevertheless,  after  looking at  the operations  of the  "monde a  l'envers" i n the Dindenault, Lord of Basche and V i l l o n  stories,  we  mimetic  must  recognise  principle,  that  there  remains  a  certain  at work, as i t were, unconsciously.  pleasure i n the  fiction is  acted out ostentatiously  that what i s  The source of  normally repressed i 3  and joyously, which must be seen as a  sort of wish-fulfillment,  3ince the f i c t i o n has the logic of a  kind of "pleasure principle" at work i n a w i s h - f u l f i l l i n g dream, in opposition to the "reality principle" imposed by society.  Still, Freud  i n spite of t h i 3 Freudian schema, we do not see what  posited  fiction,  to  explain  the  a Jame3 Bond-like hero,  are invariably g r a t i f i e d . 3tory,  the  transformed lie  appeal  character  to  as we see  a  from a narrating,  Panurge i s  whose  desires  Panurge,  reader's giving  into  of  i n the Tempest  outlined i n the  controlling subject  reader's r i d i c u l e .  romance-type  protagonist,  through "dramatic irony" (the  to Panurge"s bravado), as  the  an ego-subject  Instead,  closest  of  first  is the  chapter,  an object  of  the  "demasked" as the c r i s i s of the  storm approaches, and the reader shares the perspective of Frere Jean, under whose c r i t i c a l during the storm i s  eye Panurge'3 demasking  (cowardice)  followed by h i 3 "rema3king" (bravado) once  the danger i s past.  The believe, writing  episode  of  the  an extremely as  it  relates  Tempest  in  good example of to  the  the the  reader's  Quart  Livre  is,  mechanism of identifications  I  comic and  47  distances  from  the  which produce reader  —  characters,  the  characteristic  laughter.  p h y s i o l o g i c a l aspect which the  "mimic3" t h e  subject  tickling), laughter, subject, status  to  find  that  that a  active principle Livre.  What  distinguished the  first  of  comic  writing  reality" the  used by B a k h t i n not  representant"), or  a  in  "world  subject  although fertile  the  the  the  the  this  s t a t u s of  Baudelaire,  to  i n the  a  the  i n his  De  eventual  reader is  brought  repsonse  this?  and  i n the Q u a r t L i v r e ?  Rabelais  reader.  is  not  i n order The  key  is i t 3aid We  word  representing"  "monde r e p r e s e n t a n t " of  culture  in  said  to produce here  ("monde r e p r e s e n t s , "  "world  the  limited  " c h r o n o t o p e " i n the  substratum  back  in  how  r e a l i s m , w h i c h , a s we  represented"  the  of  mocked.  the probable the  reduces  of  identify,  same p o s s i b i l i t y  "mimesis"  of  the  example  object  from can  object.  i n h i s work on t h e  "mirror"  of  t h i s object  a t work  to represent  "represent":  horizon  (Girard uses  i n understanding  kind  out,26  which  c e r t a i n "mimesis" must be  i s not  of  laughter,  control  f r o m t h e m i m e s i s of  verisimilitude  does  this  chapter,  the  "illusion  of  points  the  a c e r t a i n "mimetic" q u a l i t y  "weakness" of mocker and  Thus we  Quart  of  laughing  rire.,27 sees  i d e n t i t y of  an  the  has  impotence  reduction  whom  Girard  of l a u g h t e r :  loss  structures  physiological reaction i n  h e l p l e s s laughed-at  1'essence du  as  the  the  certain recurrent  Rene  of l a u g h t e r  convulsive  with  of a  As  object  mimics and  to  by the is term  novel28), ("monde  forms e i t h e r a (popular  or  48  classical) remains  f o r t h e "monde  true f o r us:  wa3 t o d i s t i n g u i s h  "implied  showing  "monde r e p r e s e n t a n t " from "implied author"  reader"  certain  from  effects  genres,  where  remains  the reader  outside  rep63entant. " l'envers" all,  these  n o t a b l y the dramatic  the  We  that  That  "monde r e p r e s e n t e , " "dramatic n a r r a t o r " audience"),  i n the text  thereby  itself  ( t r a g i c ) and romanesque responds,  text,  forming  through  t h e "monde  chapter  ("monde  e f f e c t s a g a i n s t e f f e c t s i n other  who  saw a l s o  from  "narrative  of g e n r e  r e p r e s e n t e " ) , and s e t t i n g genres,  i n the f i c t i o n .  p a r t of what we d i d i n t h e f i r s t  when we d i s t i n g u i s h e d (and  represents"  (realistic)  the implied part  of  reader,  the  "monde  t h e w o r k i n g s of t h e "monde a  representant"  i s not "mirrored" a t  but rather inverted,  " t u r n e d u p s i d e down," b y t h e f i c t i o n .  We  the  said  also  "identification" sympathy among  on  that  the reader;  ( p i t y ) and t e r r o r ,  the  experience.  effects  implied  that  Y e t , a s we  author  this  does  remains  not  true  necessary to the c a t h a r s i s , the  author  wants  s e e i n t h e Tempest  hi3  episode,  enjoin  in  that  are not  reader  to  the reader  d o e s r e q u i r e a c e r t a i n a l t e r n a n c e of i d e n t i t y and d i f f e r e n c e i n order  to experience  irreductible subject in in  the f u l l  ambiguity,  and impotent  that  object.  comic of  effect,  the i d e n t i t y  coward:  of  from a n  controlling  Panurge, whom t h e r e a d e r h a s s e e n  t h e p o s i t i o n of power i n t h e D i n d e n a u l t the l i g h t  w h i c h comes  of h i 3 p a r a l y s i n g  fear  e p i s o d e , now a p p e a r s ,  of d e a t h ,  as a  helpless  49  Panurge, a y a n t d u c o n t e n u en s o n estomach b i e n repeu l e 3 p o i s s o n s scatophages, r e s t a i t a c r o p y sus l e t i l i a c , t o u t a f f l i g e , t o u t meshaigne, e t a demy mort: invoque tous l e s b e n o i s t z s a i n t s et s a i n t e s a s o n ayde.... 79)  (Rabelais,  The where  "critique"  a  sort  of  of Panurge, polarity  courage/hypocritical  Frere  Jean/Panurge  cowardice) has  h e r e t a k e s on i t s f u l l  already  him  meeting  w i t h the d y i n g Raminagrobis  crisis  where  Panurge  h y p o c r i t i c a l l y defends the mendicant  speak,  and  "fears,"  impotence.  he  not  Here  i n the Quart  fear  ha3  stomach,  (honest  established  that  Livre,  l e a d s him  the  room  where  his  "doubts,"  only Livre  immediate  human itself,  which  of d e a t h b u t  is  full  the p a t t e r n  physical  o r d e r s and  condemns so t o  reduce  i 3 repeated, but he  devils,  skin,"  the d e l i r i u m  manifestation:  as here, or h i s bowels,  of  immediately  of  Panurge'3  to a metaphysical  f o r h e r e s y , i n o r d e r t o "save h i s own  fears  an  I n the T i e r s  imagines  assuage  Livre,  p h y s i c a l dimensions as v o m i t i n g which h a 3  reduced  Raminagrobis  to  which began i n the T i e r s  of  to  hell.  Panurge's  empties h i s .  as i n the Ganabin episode which  c l o s e s t h e book.  What a r e t h e e f f e c t s mechanism i 3 a t work? learned  to  Panurge  often  (according  identify  to  appears the  makes i t p o s s i b l e  on t h e r e a d e r , and  Fir3t, with as  pattern  l e t us a d m i t  Panurge the  in  the  narrating,  established  f o r t h e r e a d e r t o be  in  what that  psychological the reader  comic  perspective:  controlling the  has  subject  Pantagruel)  who  comfortably established  50  as  spectator,  can  be  fulfilled,  vivant"  who  shameless  remains but  i s now  also  of  epithets  which  Panurge  l e pleurart,  continual  Frere  reference  Jean  the 16th century reader.  structure  which  degradation, controlling Frere  lest  through  of d e v i l s  given  —  and i m p o t e n t modelling  whom t h e r e a d e r  The object himself,  degradation of  ridicule  of  causes  thus mimicking  impotence.  Panurge the  defiance  on a n y  —  is a  Panurge'3  ( o f t h e r e a d e r ) of  and  secondly,  non-ambiguous  through  controlling  h i s superiority,  h i s laughter.  from  controlling  reader  t h e same p r o c e s s ,  Thus a m i m e t i c p r o c e s s  through  can maintain  e i t h e r sympathy o r f e a r m u f f l e  by  metaphysics  irreligious  identity  a  l e veau,  a r e matched a  of  the, ( t e m p o r a r i l y )  of, f i r s t ,  object,  litany  i t s effect  Panurge  t h e ambiguous  of d a n g e r ,  i n hell,  t o have  Frere  of P a n u r g e ,  ("Panurge  the p r e v a l e n t  (temporarily)  the e f f e c t  courage,  that  The  le criart....")  polarity the  producing  Jean's  subject,  has  through h i s  i n the face itself.  sur l e  character,  however  a t Panurge  c u l t u r e , i s bound  Jean  subject  hurls  which,  The  same  object  Notice  hell  to multitudes  of  Frere  impotent  not only  and  Panurge  t h e d e l i r i u m of h e l l  religious/  to  plaque  i n t h e e y e s of t h e r e a d e r  death  of  envisaged  t h e "mScanique  and h y p o c r i s y .  of c o u r a g e ,  i n that  c o n d i t i o n of s u p e r i o r i t y 2 9  Yet i t i s t h i s  degraded  t h e "demotion"  a paragon  that  laughter.  cowardice  with  the Bergsonian  i n order  can t r i g g e r  Panurge,  Jean,  so t h a t  to  laugh  that  i s indeed  subject  to  convulsively  of r e d u c t i o n t o  a t work, t h o u g h n o t  51  a  mimesis  of  (unconscious)  representation, identification  but  with  rather  the  a  mimesis  transformation  character from controlling subject to helpless object.  of  of the  Just as,  with the representation of the "monde a l'envers," the rapport of  power was inverted, and thus a l l difference  effaced between  dominant and dominated, so here that degradation of the Panurge shows the "democratic" nature of laughter,  the  subject tendency  in comic writing to replace the p r i n c i p l e of moral j u s t i f i c a t i o n so  noticeable  principle  of  i n dramatic levelling.  or  realistic  Nothing i s  individual i n comic writing;  presentation  sacred,  with a  and nothing  is  the d i s t i n c t i o n sacred/profane  is  ofter reversed, and the individual, with h i 3 claims to n o b i l i t y , uniqueness,  etc.,  i s reduced to his animal limitations,  to what  he has i n common with the rest of humanity.  Although "democratic"  we  see,  comic  in  the  levelling  degradation  process,  reader's  r e l a t i o n to Panurge's  attitude  which,  when  of  Panurge,  the  it  comes  the  to  "double" Pantagruel, we see  though ambivalent,  is  nonetheless  an  respectful.  When the cosmic effects of the death of Christ are recounted as the death of Servateur" gigantic  "le bon Pan, le grand pasteur. . . . nostre  (Rabelais,  and grotesque  103).  Pantagruel i s  form for  the  first  represented time  unique i n his  i n the Quart  Livre: Pantagruel, ce p r o p o 3 finy, r e 3 t a en silence et profonde contemplation. Peu de temps apres, nous veismes les l a r m e 3 decouller de ses oeilz grosses comme oeufs de Austruche. Je me donne a Dieu, s i  52 je mens d'un seul mot. ( R a b e l a i 3 , 103-4)  (Note the protestation of veracity on the part of the narrator, in its ironic form "Je m e donne a Dieu...." which, as we said in the first chapter, p u t 3  the fiction not the particularly comic  context of the "ground of falsehood" between implied author and implied reader.)  The tears of Pantagruel, as "large as ostrich  eggs," lead to a certain effect of pathos in the reader which stems from the  reader's position as admirer  of  the "noble  Pantagruel" who, in the passage quoted in the first chapter, kills in mock-heroic (epic) style the monstrous "physetere" with all the parodie hyperbole that entails.  Thus, Panurge, and not Pantagruel, i 3 the character to whom the reader responds with the characteristic comic ambivalence, with the ambiguity of identity and difference. the  reader  difference:  feel3  towards  Pantagruel is  Pantagruel  is  The ambivalence  an ambivalence of  "noble" — distinguished from the  reader — but his nobility is not the tragic nobility of the catharsis, a nobility mitigated by a tragic flaw (hamartia), but a parodie and grotesque nobility of mock-epic.  It  is in this  (long-established and recurrent) role that Pantagruel vanquishes the Andouilles on the Isle Farouche, the non-verisimilar mockepic narrative which occasions the narrator's self-discrediting protestation  of  veracity,  the  discussed in the first chapter.  implications  of  which were  53  D.  Satire and Difference:  Quaresmeprenant and the Andouilles  Before we broach the  subject  of  the  mechanism of  reader  response at work i n the Qua re smepreriant-Andou.il les episode,  the  Papefigues and Papemanes episodes and the Hesser Gaster episode, which form the major part of the rest of the Quart L i v r e , let us take a brief  theoretical  humour and s a t i r e ,  excursus  into  i n the perspective  the difference  between  of our mimetic p r i n c i p l e  of  identification.  This w i l l be necessary because the elements  of  satire predominate i n these latter episodes over the elements  of humour.  As elaborated by Luigi Pirandello i n his essay L'umori3mo3Q the difference between "humour" and "satire" i s that the  latter  i s characterised by irony (ironia), defined by Pirandello as an expression Hodest  of  the  Proposal),  (sentimento del and  therefore  of  whose modalities  contrary of while  what  is  meant  "humour" stems  contrario) on the part of the implied reader.  (ex:  Swift's A  from an  ambivalence  the  In our terms,  "satire,"  include parody and irony, presents an  with which the reader cannot possibly identify: exaggerated  implied author,  object  everything  is  i n order to accentuate the feeling of difference on  the part of the reader.  Irony (satire, grotesque parody) leads  the reader to a feeling of superiority, and i s therefore marked not by laughter  (which, as we saw with the example of Panurge  during the tempest, requires a measure of identification) but by  54  the  smile  (Pirandello uses,  for instance,  smile of the "serene" irony of Ariosto). hand,  is  marked by the ambivalence of  the  example  of  the  Humour, on the other laughter,  a phenomenon  remarked upon at length by Bakhtin i n his "history of laughter" i n the f i r s t chapter of his Rabelais.31  In humour, laughter  is  triggered by the unconscious ambiguity of the reader's identity coupled  with  laughter.  his  difference  In effect,  the  vis-a-vis  the  object  of  laughing reader i n a sense  his  laugh3  with, as well as at, the object of his laughter.  Due to the nature of the polemic behind the remainder of the  episodes  i n the  Quart Livre,  made  sharper by the  ever-  present threat of censure i n the Prologues i n the f i r s t chapter (curse of the misreaders, which  begin  exemplified  to in  dominate the  Quaresmeprenant,  etc.), over  Tempest  it  is  the  the  elements of  ambivalence  episode.  satire  of  humour,  The grotesque  figures  Antiphy3ie, and even M e 3 s e r Gaster accentuate  difference and reduce identity to a minimum on the part of the reader. the  The ambivalence the reader f e l t  Tempest,  Dindenault laughter:  the  beaten  diminishes,  Chiquanous,  and  so  does  towards Panurge during and  even  the  the  convulsive  drowning mimetic  laughter i s replaced by the b i t t e r but superior (not  to say "supercilious," as one could probably say of the smile of the reader of Voltaire) smile of irony.  Quaresmeprenant, the  "fouetteur de petitz  enfans.. . . homme  55  de  bien  et  de  grande  devotion"  whose  101),  (Rabelai3,  description, as we saw in the first chapter, shows clearly the ideological perspective of the implied author, is "anatomised" in such a way as to render him completely "other," so that the reader  regards him as an "object".  listed  as a  series of  "marked" by pejorative Particularly ("comme  terms not  3imiles,  parts are  even necessarily  connotations stemming from the satire.  "interesting"  une  internal  Hi3  chasuble"),  internal or  the  parts,  such as the heart  "boyau  cullier"  (always  "interesting" in Rabelais, "comme un bourabaguin monachal"), or the  urine  ("comme  un papefigue"),  however,  do have mock-  religious resonances.  The  similes  qualities  —  corr3ponding  his  imagination  to  Quaresmeprenant's abstract  ("comme  un  carillonment  de  cloches"), "3ens commun" ("comme un bourdon"), "pensees" ("comme un vol d'estourneaulx")  convey satirical intent,  but when it  comes to his "external parts," all reference seems to be lost in favour of the free play of the signifier. a3  the  signified i 3  visual appeal:  concerned,  there seems to be a certain  the "trou de cul" i 3 compared to a "mirouoir  crystallin," and the " m a m e l l e 3 "  to "un cornet a bouquin. "  visual appeal continues with the list the  Nevertheless, as far  "contenances" of Quaresmeprenant:  This  of metaphors expressing for  instance, when he  opens his mouth to belch, the spectacle is compared to "huytres en escalle."  However, if  he speechifies ("discourait") it  i3  (as) "neiges d'antan," the cliche from Villon indicating that he  56  tends to be a bore.  This  enigmatic  "anatomy"  of  Quaresmemprenant presents  with a kind of monstrous abstraction: not  identify,  but  the  metaphorical  us  not only can the reader deformations  of  language  inscribe Quaresmeprenant i n the completely "non-mimetic" (in the sense of  representation)  reference  or  even  metaphors  does  describe him. in  the  (huitres  of  communicative "narrate"  purpose.  The  of  "subject";  are  listed,  it  with  is  the  without  catalogue  of  nor  it  does  term under which  hyperrealistic  en escalle") or even s u r r e a l i s t i c  fictional  itself,  Quaresmenprenant,  compared to "mirouoir crystallin")  It  language  The term "Quaresmenprenant" i s not a "character"  sense  comparisons  not  category  (the  (belching  the like  "trou de cul"  resonances without regard to  referent.  is  the  commentary of  Frere Jean and Pantagruel which  contextualises Quaresmeprenant,  and gives him his  function  in  terms of the ideological alignment of implied author and implied reader.  Frere Jean comments, obviously i r o n i c a l l y : Yoyla le guallant... . C ' e s t mon homme. C ' e s t c e l u i que je cherche. Je luy vais mander un cartel. (Rabelais,  Pantagruel's reference  commentary  to the positive  valorised  by  Prologues  is  the  implied  then  situates  110)  Quaresmeprenant  ideological p o l a r i t y , the author:  the  now replaced by the parent  in  perspective  "mediocrite"  of  the  term — "nature," of  57  which It  "mesure"  i s the epigonic  i s t h e e l e m e n t of  estrange  et  Pantagruel  "demesure"  mon3trueuse  of  the  ideal  ( a s opposed  "demesure").  w h i c h make3 Quaresmeprenant  membreure  "forme  to  d homme,"  who  1  e t c o n t e n a n c e de  Amodunt  reminds  [disharmony]  e t D i s c o r d a n c e " ( R a b e l a i s , 110), c h i l d r e n of " A n t i p h y s i e " , nature," after  the  double32  a l l an  abstraction  humanistic i d e a l s  The  produced  whose  " m e d i o c r i t e " and  image of t h e c h i l d r e n  a i r and t h e i r h e a d 3 below, sus  l e s pied3  teste,  which  unambiguously  satirical  image w h i c h  alignment  of  Antiphysie, fixes  the  implied  fixes  their  function  relie3  "Nature," which i s is  (Rabelais,  to  engender  their  of  of  on t h e  reader.  of i r o n y ,  further  Quaresmeprenant, and  author,  feet  the  i n the  l a roue, c u l i s an  the  implied  reader  ideological  111)  vis-a-vi3  for i t s effect  a u t h o r and  "Anti-  "mesure".  difference  "monstrosity"  cataloguing  idea  "continuellement f a i s a n t  contrement"  identity  the  of A n t i p h y s i e ,  through the "smile"  "comfortable"  by  "une  image  reader,  a  ideological The  myth  of  e l a b o r a t e s and effecting and  naming  the and  enemies:  . . ..Mategotz, C a g o t z e t P a p e l a r s ; l e s Maniacles, Pistoletz: l e s D e m o n i a c l e s C a l v i n s , i m p o 3 t e u r s de Geneve, l e s e n r a g e z P u t h e r b e s , B r i f f a u x , C a p h a r s , Chattemittes.... ( R a b e l a i s , 112)  Lest because  the a l l e g o r y of  the  become  censure,  the  too war  "readable" of  h e r e , and  Pantagruel  perhaps  ( i n h i s mock-  58  heroic  r o l e ) and  transparency  with  referential this  of  exactly  the  symbolic  representatives  residue  of  laughter  tendency  of  the  The  author  Antiphy3ie, to  blur  the  fantasy, not artistic  An  is  the  horse  his  the  reason,  i t is of only  narrator  but  also  of  Andouilles, and of  Gras  and  parody the  through  slaughter the  of  of  healing  epic  hero  as  serpentine  —  the  (Pantagruel),  Truye")  of  the  the  through  ideological  filled  with  fiction  the  "unimaginable"  signified  Quaresmeprenant,  and  for  of  invention  of  p o s i t i o n , and  now  attempts  unbridled  comic  censure but a l s o to safeguard  and  would  play in the  of  everything  irreductibly  be  s u s c e p t i b l e to for  "monstrosity"  the  a l l e g o r y with  undecidable  transparency  both  and  not  scene  ("la  least  occurs,  comic v i s i o n w h i c h p l a c e s  perspective,  the  the  story  effect,  o n l y t o evade the  unambiguous  rendering  through  especially  transparency  purpose,  "double"  in  and  exposed  Mardi  the  etc.  has,  Quaresmeprenant  pig  are  the  protestation  seductive  to i d e n t i f y w i t h  Trojan  cooks b y F r e r e J e a n ,  the  the  "blur"  Rabelais,  genealogy  the  flying  the  parody  of  Nevertheless,  the  triggers  of  of  chapter  mock-mythic  principle.  mustard,  the  of  with  first  to  Andouilles  paradoxical  unreliability  a  Andouilles,  the  the  proposing  feminine  sort  The  i n order  inventions  that  in  comic  ensues  fantasy.  fictive  discussed  reflecting  Andouilles  comic  the  juncture  veracity  the  by  literal the the  in a  ambiguous.  nature  inartistic,  translation.  signifier  his  and  for  "description"  non-ref e r e n t i a l i t y  of  This the of the  59  Andouilles and their mock-mythological resonances.  E.  Papefigues and Papemanes:  One of  the reasons for blurring  "unreadable" relativise  the Non-committal Reader  and  the  farcical  battle  the allegory through the  with  polemic which threatens  the  Andouilles  to make the  3mile of irony a l i t t l e  too s e l f - s a t i s f i e d .  Girard r i g h t l y observes,  tends  is  to  reader's  Polemic, as Ren6  to "monopolise whatever remains  of the sacred" (Girard, 116), to replace whatever i 3 "debunked" with a  new set  of  taboos,  which abrogate  sacredness of the old taboos.  If,  to  themselves  the  as Roger C a i l l o i s says,  the  sacred can be defined as . . . t h a t being, object, or idea [. . . ] for which man departs from routine, that which he does not allow to be discussed, scoffed at, or joked about... ( C a i l l o i 3 , 132-3)  we can say that the sacred, or at least the place of the sacred, i 3 profoundly antagonistic to the comic, that which continually relativises  exactly those  social context (as we see,  things  taken most  seriously i n  the  for instance, i n the operation of the  "monde a l'envers").  The Papefigues and Papemanes episodes m u 3 t be seen i n the historical  context,  the persecutions  that of post-Affair-of-the-Placards France,  of the Protestants by the e c c l e s i a s t i c a l and  60  monarchical powers, etc. land  of  the  Pantagruel, i n the cursed and desolate  Papefigues  (Protestants),  comes upon the  strange  sight of a Papefigue t o t a l l y submerged i n a baptismal font with his nose protruding.  The narrative which ensues explains  cause  ends  of  liberates of  one  this,  and  with  a  the submerged Papefigue.  of  the devils  surprising It  who attempt  to  gesture  concerns the extort  oppressed Papefigue's a g r i c u l t u r a l produce.  the  which  outwitting  tribute  from the  The narrative not  only valorises the peasant wisdom of a f o l k l o r i c culture against officialdom his  (who are represented by the d e v i l as succumbing to  temptations),  but  also,  curiously,  situates  the  final  vanquishing power of the Papefigue3 against the d e v i l , by a kind of  displacement,  i n the exposure of the 3ex of the old wife of  the persecuted Papefigue.  Seeing the 3ex of the old woman, the  d e v i l 3creams i n alarm: Mahon, Demiourgan, Hegere, Alecto, Persephone, i l ne me tient pas! Je m'en voy3 bel erre. Cela! Je l u i quite le champs. (Rabelais, 146) The  Papefigue  in  the  baptismal  font  is  thus  saved  from  a  promised "scratching" contest with the d e v i l by the "wound" of his wife,  which w i l l  therefore  taken the place of the sacred,  and  "never heal. "  The sex  of the woman has  capable of saving man  frightening away devils.  What does this fiction?  mean i n terms of the reader of the comic  We can say,  first  of a l l ,  that  the polemic of  the  61  humanist  author/*reader ha3  displaces praise  the  interest  or blame and  nourished  by  the  demonstration stupidity  on  scandalous thus  triumph  genre  of  the  the  the  various  i d e o l o g y over  though farmer  the  part  sex.  of  another,  but  to  victims  finally  r a p p o r t of  reader,  not  through  of  instinct  e t c . ),  the  and  The  of the  one  sympathy  and  the (and  to  the  power i s  through  the  a parody  of  saint's  monological33  of  sacred,  the v i c t i m i z e r 3 .  of t h e which puts  sacred, but not  reader  allowed  context  to  The  the  3acred  officials i3  not  "victory"  gratified,  "obscene,"  of  lives  female  and the  mentioned b y  substituted  of the  i s not  only  reader i s  against  injustice,  t o n e and atmosphere;  which  the  The  through a r a d i c a l  obscene,  for  r e p l a c e the  a parody  sex.  the  a g a i n s t the  s a c r e d what  satisfy his indignation  i s maintained  with  i s o b t a i n e d and  through the  the  s i n c e t h i s would d e s t r o y t h e comic ambivalence  is  the v i c t i m s does not  i n the p l a c e  even  reader  his i r e directed  monarchical  ideology pleasure  of the  and h i s w i f e , and  i . e . , t h e i d e o l o g y of  of  saints,  (an  of w h i c h i n t h e p o p u l a r  another,  comic  assignation  sex h a v i n g t a k e n t h e p l a c e of t h e s i g n of  ecclesiastical  devil,  thus  of  which  i s t o f r i g h t e n away d e v i l s .  Papefigue  not  lives  female  delight  the e f f i c a c i t y  Thus,  the  the  victimizes),  of  the sacred, the female the c r o s s ,  the  fiction,  t h e d e s i g n a t i o n of h e r o / m a r t y r s  part  to  the  from  on the  the  one  reader  by  intelligence  showing  of  of the  r e a d i n g of  of  inverted  been r e f r a c t e d  is  the  instead  juxtaposition essence of  62  "carnavalisation,"  the  deliberate  bringing  together  of  two  domains normally kept separate through parody.  The Papemanes episode, with the worshipping of the Pope by the Papemanes as  "God on earth," Homenaz's bombastic praise of  the Decretals, and the catalogue of the mock "miracles" of these said  Decretals,  sententiousness similar  continues and  tone of  this  bombast  of  Dindenault,  but  parodie Homenaz this  modality.  reminds  time  the  The  one  of  the  object of  the  parodie encomium i s not the medical properties  of the parts of  sheep,  parody  but  replicates  the a  "Sainctes  Decretales. "  common style  in R a b e l a i 3 ,  used, for instance,  The the  in  epideictic  fact style  i n the praise of the debtors and of the herb  Pantagruelion i n the Tiers Livre.  Whereas, however, gratified  by  the  the reader i n the Dindenault episode  revenge  of  Panurge  upon the  verbose  is  sheep  merchant, by a reversal i n the rapport of power (symbolised by the power of Pantagruel  speech), here the commentary of  seems to reflect  positively  both Panurge and  upon Homenaz.  Panurge  comments of the Papemanes: I c y . . . . de par tous les Diables, ne sont i l z hereticques comme fut Raminagrobis, et comme i l z sont parmy les Almaignes et Angleterre. Vous estez Christians t r i e z sur le volet. (Rabelais, 154)  And upon reception of Homenaz' parting g i f t  of "good Christian  63 pears,"  Pantagruel comments:  meilleurs  que  ces  "positive"  remarks must  shed  for  Papimanes"  bon3  reader, and i n fact, pathetic  "...oncgues ne veiz Christians  of  (165)  These  seemingly  course be taken i r o n i c a l l y by the  after  the  effect  by  ostensible tears of Homenaz  as  he  contrition  finishes  the  peroration of his epideictic oration i n praise of the Decretals, capable of "drawing gold from France to Rome," Epistemon, Frere Jean and Panurge feign their own tears: voyans cette facheuses catastrophe, commencerent au couvert de leur serviettes c r i e r : Myault, Myault, Myault, feignant ce pendent de 3'essuer les o e i l z , comme s ' i l s eussent plore. (Rabelais, 164) Bombast  thus  calls  forth bathos,  as  it  did i n  the  case  of  Panurge's sermon to the drowning Dindenault.  Partially  due  to  the  effects  upon the  reader  of  this  commentary of the characters (an authorial strategy mentioned i n the f i r s t  chapter), we can say then that what i 3 said, both by  Homenaz and by the  characters,  through irony,  exact contrary of what i 3 meant. implied  author  and  implied  is  i n fact  the  The ideological alignment of  reader  is  already  so  firmly  established through the Prologues and commentary, the Antiphysie episode,  etc. ,  that  ornamentation of i t s of  itself,  the  speech  of  Homenaz,  with  all  the  rhetoric, i s not only unconvincing i n and  but even convinces  the reader of the exact  of what i t purports to convince him.  opposite  Thus we can safely assume  that Homenaz' praise of the efficacy of the Decretals i n drawing  64  gold from France to Rome i s proof of  the author's Gallicanism  and Evangelicalism.  Can  we  say,  simply inverts  then,  itself  that  the  polemic  of  through the f i c t i o n ,  interpret (x) by substituting  (y),  the  author  here  and that we simply  that one monological context  has been replaced by another through irony?  If that were true,  the comic aspect of the f i c t i o n would be i n danger,  just a3 i t  was endangered by the "too-readable" allegory of A n t i p h y 3 i e .  If  the author'3 polemic simply substitutes one set  of taboos with  another,  3ince the very  the widest sense of the comic i s l o s t ,  nature of the comic i 3 to r e l a t i v i s e it:  the sacred, not to replace  laughter becomes "reduced"34 and humour narrows i t s  scope  to the " s a t i r i c a l " exclusively.  If  the  full  ambivalent  safeguarded,  the  reader  committal.  nature  must  If he were to be  of  remain,  the to  comic  some  is  to  extent,  "engaged" by the polemic  be  nonof  the  author and were to embrace a Manichean view of social r e a l i t y i n which humanity i s polarised into ideological opposites,  the f u l l  public participatory and "carnavalised" nature of laughter would be  lost,  drawing become however,  the  'democratised"  room of the  smile  this  demonstrates  is  snobbery35 of not  irony. the  public and the  square  would  laughter  of  In the Quart Livre case,  for  the  become  humour would of  speechifying  his humanity through a few well  the  Rabelais, Homenaz  choses physical  65  actions: Icy commenca Homenaz rocter, peter, r i r e , baver et suer; et b a i l l a 3 o n gros, g r a 3 bonnet a guatre braguettes a une des f i l l e s , laquelle le posa sus son beau chef en grande alaigresse, apres 1'avoir amoureusement baise (Rabelais,  The interest  of  the reader i s  163)  then further displaced from  the inverted polemic of irony to the "poires du bon Christian," gifts  of Homenaz to his departing guests,  comments  of Frere  and to  Jean concerning Homenaz'  the  obscene  daughters.  Thus,  just as the sex of the old Papefiguiere robs the 3acred of  it3  power through parody, the polemic of the author i s referenced to the sweating, lest  it  belching and farting body of the buffoon Homenaz,  divide the  "represented  and reduce laughter to exclusive "impure"  other.  The abstract  world" into Manichean halves, r i d i c u l e of and idealised,  the  ideologically  which tends  to  impinge on the scacred through the conflict of polemic, i s  thus  relativised by a comic representation of the body i n i t s  most  concrete and certainly "non-ideal" (heroic or tragic)  F.  Hesser Gaster:  the "Juste Hilieu" of the B e l l y  The image of Messer Gaster, monde"  (Rabelais,  functions.  171),  like  "premier maistre es ars de ce  Antiphysie,  is  an  allegory,  a  66 f i c t i v e bringing to l i f e of the "dead metaphor" of the proverb: "the  stomach has no ears," a frequent  example,  the  first  meeting  of  topos i n Rabelais  Pantagruel with  Panurge i n Pantagruel, where this  the  (for  famished  idea i s conveyed i n fourteen  real or imagined languages): . . . D i e u de silence. En Grec nomme Sigalion, estre astome, c'est-a-dire s a n 3 bouche, a i n s i Gaster sans a u r e i l l e s fut c r e £ II ne parle que par signes. Mais a s e 3 3 i g n e s tout le monde o b e i 3 t plus soubdain qu'aux edictz des Preteurs, et mandemens des Roys. (Rabelais, 171-2)  Citing the allegory of Aesop i n which the primacy of  the B e l l y  was  the  restored after  a failed  revolt  against  him of  other  organs i n the "royaume de Somates," the author goes on to posit Ga3ter (Belly) as the inventor of tous engins et subtilitez"  (172).  "toutes ars,  toute3 machines,  Though Gaster himself cannot  speak, he teaches the animal3 language: Les Corbeaulx, les Gays, les Papegays, les Estourneaulx, i l rend poetes; les Pies i l f a i t poetrides, et leur aprent languaige humain proferer, parler, chanter. Et tout pour l a trippe. (Rabelais, 172) Everything i 3 referenced  to the Belly:  the a r t of  conserving  grain, and of war, even language i t s e l f , which becomes a t o o l , a means more than an end, i n order to f a c i l i t a t e of  hunger,  desires.  which  takes  priority  over  all  the the  satisfaction other human  67  For a l l h i 3 p r i o r i t y and primacy, however, Gaster does not occupy the realm of the 3acred:  after  sacrifices  by  of  monstrueuse,  the  Gastrolatres  ridicule,  ventripotent"  (175)  hydeuse"  Gaster,  the  the description of  means  (176)  of  Manduce to  "effigie  "leur  dieu  author makes abundantly clear  that Gaster i s "non Dieu, mais paouvre, v i l e , (180).  their  the  chetifve  creature"  After a l l the culinary delights are sacrificed  to him,  Gaster sends the Gastrolatres: . . . . a sa s e l l e pers6e veoir, considerer, philospher et contempler quelle d i v i n i t y i l s trouvaient en sa matiere fecale. (Rabelai3,  180)  What, then, i s the function of this f i n a l powerful image i n terms of the laughing reader and the comic v i s i o n of Livre?  The appropriateness  primal B e l l y can be  3een  i n the Prologue of 1552, unity,  the  totality  thematic of  the  of this  image of  the Quart  the profane and  from the ideal of "mediocrity proposed which provides the 3ign of  under which could be narratives . of  the  ideological  subsumed almost  Quart  Livre:  the from  C o u i l l a t r i s , Dindenault and Chiquanous, through the Tempest,  the  anatomy of Quaresmeprenant and Antiphysie, to the V i s i t to  the  Papefigues  and the Papemanes.  recapitulates  allegorically  The image of this  thematic,  the Master B e l l y a  profound than any Gallican or Evangelical polemic.  thematic  more  For not only  does the B e l l y occupy the "juste milieu" between the Head (site of  what  Burke c a l l s  the  "hierarchical goadings"36)  and  the  68  Genitalia Freud,  (site  have p r i m a c y  abrogate phallus  the and  the  For t h i s  nature with  at  or  Unconscious),  but  whereas men  animal  the  sacred.  i t also  does  not  have w o r s h i p p e d  the  countenance,  or  for  Whereas  its  scapegoating,  odds w i t h  the  the  ideological  scatological  i n comedy  do  not  call  forth  they  in  the  reader,  have  never  but  comic  It  tends  and  the the  catharsis,  has  on  principle  a  any  kind,  towards  the  "obscene. "  sacred of  and  and  by  even  corporeal,  If  Chiquanous)  instead self-inclusive  a  i s profoundly,  there  these  t h e p u r g a t i o n of  p l e a s u r a b l y t h e h e l p l e s s n e s s of t h e  relativising  tragic  extremes of  (Dindenault,  the  the  catharsis  a b s t r a c t i o n i n general.  "victims"  l o n g i n g s which, f o r  r e a s o n t h e B e l l y i s p r o f o u n d l y comic,  depending  profane,  libidinal  belly.  "victimage,"3?  the  human  "profaning"  function,  i n the  sacred to i t s e l f :  worshipped the  and  of a l l i n s t i n c t i v e  are  victims  f e a r and  pity  l a u g h t e r , w h i c h mimes  "victim."  ***  Our  portrait  whose a t t e n t i o n inversion laughing  of  is  rather  the  who  the  experience  a  the Quart  mimes  imitation the  " v i c t i m , " a non-committal reader to  of  "non-teleological," than  reader  reader  who  desacralised  a  Livre  reader of  who  social  helplessness  of  —  a  enjoys reality, the  transcends polemic and  profoundly  reader the a  comic  i n order  "material"  69  represented  world  —  i s the  reader  i m p l i c a t e d by  "text"  itself.  that see  the  differences  of  the  demonstration particular  say  between  of  response  kind  of  showing  the of  "mimetic"  the  and  drawing  Livre,  we  can  author  of  this  apply to other  to  see  the  the causes further  c r e a t i o n of  fulfillment then  showing  further  of w r i t i n g ,  how  then,  and  such  may  create  the  "response"  of  literary desire,"  strategy t o the  of  similar  of  the  form as the  "aroused"  Burke author  the  show  w h i c h we  differs  reader a  of  next  strategy,  the  through unifying  reader.  the  Quart of  an  strategies 3tep to  would  explore  then perhaps  socio-hi3torical  reading  have  from  strategy  similar The  the  of R a b e l a i s :  of t h e t i m e , and  i s the  Through  laughing  also  artistic  of whom we  and  desacralising,  seeing  context  reader  positively,  generalise  an  can  can  Livre  i t  l i t e r a r y works of a r t . of  we  the  "evidence"  this  reader,  by  a  s i n c e we  "epic. "  of t h e Q u a r t  portrait  i n the c u l t u r a l  which  of  of  of the i d e n t i f y i n g  e x p e c t a t i o n s of t h e r e a d e r the  or this  material  the  context  i s the  exists at a l l ,  to g e n e r a l i s e to other s i m i l a r  contexts  reader  r e a l i s m , and  therefore kind  "implied reader."  representation with  through  profoundly  Through  of  "comic" n a r r a t i v e  tragedy  an  responses  "tragedy"  c h a r a c t e r of t h e r e s p o n s e  be  this  the  of  negatively,  mimesis  that  that  reader  to d e a l i n the first,  can  of  g e n e r i c expectations generated  "comic" a3 a l i t e r a r y g e n r e  the  those  We  the  portrait  cultural  p u b l i c s sharing  the  have drawn a p o r t r a i t .  If  result  suggests itself  of  the  "arousal  (3ee above, must  be  seen  d e s i r e of a r e a d i n g p u b l i c , a  and  22-27), as  a  public  w h i c h i s a s much a  c u l t u r a l product as  ***  t h e l i t e r a r y work  itself.  71  Conclusion  The reading bygone  humanist  of a text which i s  a c u l t u r a l product  and Christian culture,  of  which  only  of a traces  remain i n our modernity, seems at best to invite us to a work of "archeological" reconstitution. of i t s  The text of Rabelais, i n spite  striking "modernity," with a l l i t s  (demonstrated futur),  "progressive" aspects  convincingly by Jean Paris  and most important,  text" i n the modern sense,  the  fact  i n his  that  it  Rabelais  is  a  au  "literary  reproduced by a printing press,  is,  for a l l that, a product of a culture which w i l l never regain i t 3 former dominance, but i s destined to marginality.  Nevertheless,  my project ha3 not been a purely  "archeological" one.  I have tried to show, i n demonstrating the  artistic  Rabelai3 and the p o r t r a i t  strategy of  implied by his comic writing, that Rabelais, authorial rejoins  and the  the  reader  through his use of  commentary, unreliable narration, parody, and irony,  the  climate.  of  reading  tastes  of  our own "post-modern"  cultural  I suggest, at the end of my chapter on "Literary Form Desire  of  the  Reader," that  fragmented and ideologically  this  polarised  is  nature  because of  of  the  the cultural  universe Rabelais inhabited, which of course i s not unlike our own.  I suggest p a r a l l e l s a l 3 0 from the  18th century,  notably  Sterne and Diderot, and Joyce from our own century, who adopt a similar  artistic  startegy:  digression  commentary (Diderot), and parody (Joyce).  (Sterne),  authorial  72  In  concentrating  unreliable Livre  of  narration,  Rabealis,  towards a not  on etc.)  I  have  "method" of  "textualised,"  authorial  strategy  and  response  reader  tried  to  but  Believing  inextricably  w h i c h would  also  through  power of it  had  what  language  the  that  linked,  not  the only  Burke  calls  is,  it  seems  entails abstraction,  "poetry"  the  i3  not  3imply  "poetic," to  "poetic"  texts  Warren p o i n t  out  "poems" b u t  feel  that  glos3,  object, in  the are  the  or  to  a  the  as  a  World  are  function,  but  action,"  me,  an  the  creative  t h i s t e x t as  enterprise  descriptive  project  if  of  from  language  which  the  texts,  which  itself  critic nor  synthesize,  a f t e r a l l , of of  "text"  distinguishes  to  t h e i r Theory  everything  also cultural  "naming"  explicate but  path  c u l t u r a l context.  and  i t uses  Quart  "poetics,"  to  is  not  produce  abstract as  Literature,38  and  Wellek i s not  and ju3t  "poetry".  my  contextuali3e  itself.  that  themselves,  the  Thus  I  comment,  generalise:  generic  fact  see  ( " t e x t " ) and  own  the  theoretical  I have a p p r o a c h e d our  in  refuse  r e a d e r who  "symbolic  necessarily by  a  through a  i n general,  "poetics"  instead  Word  power t o i l l u m i n a t e  Since  the  r e a d i n g w h i c h would n o t  c u l t u r a l p r o d u c t of a n a u t h o r and products.  clear  (commentary,  "method" the  Quart  expectations Without  ha3 Livre  reflected  explicitly  been of  to  generalise  Rabelais,  in a  reader  proposing  the  to  abstract  implied new  by  and  to  from i t the  conception  text of  73  literary history the Constance  of  the proponents  school (Jauss, I s e r ) ,  the reader I have sought only w i t h the t e x t , in  "history"  falling  some  kind  implied  and in  their  terms  "reader  the  abstracted  "rules"  which  a l r e a d y begun  had  w h i c h was  neither  example  an  therefore  historicism  quasi-"poetic"  renderings.  poetics  is  "referentiality"  idea  of  or  3till  (implied  literary  genre,  in  i n terms  response. "  of  Aristotle,  of  artistic  In  this  who  I  in  "purpose" am  3imply  his  Poetics  f r o m a c o r p u s of t r a g e d i e s , a t r a g i c to  decay,  the  artistic  "genre"  "purpose"  of  author  who  t h e c a t h a r s i s , t h e r e s p o n s e of t h e r e a d e r .  the  Quart  Livre  discloses  unreliable  fiction  v i s i o n which,  of  though  and  nor  keeps  abundant  underlying  r e a d e r , t r a n s c e n d s any  the  Quart  which  an  silent,  commentary  polemic.  relativises  this  comic a m b i v a l e n c e , t h r o u g h parody: " v i c t i m s " ) who  found  i s an  who  uses  to present a ambivalent  an non-  comic  i t e n s u r e s i d e o l o g i c a l a l i g n m e n t of a u t h o r  and  Livre  R a b e l a i s we  himself  narrator  verisimilar  to  concern  s t r a t e g i e s of a t e x t l i k e t h e Q u a r t  implications  following  In  either  descriptive  r e a d e r ) and  of  c o n c e n t r a t i o n on  i n s o c i e t y and  into  of  o r d e r t o show t h e n a r r a t i v e  3een  the t e x t  I a c c e p t b o t h a measure of  and  Livre,  t h r o u g h my  "phenomenological"  that  possible, author  or  t h e R e z e p t i o n s t h e o r i e of  to avoid an o v e r l y f o r m a l i s t i c  situating  without  biographism, Believing  of  We  saw  polemic,  how thus  the author  in  safeguarding  p r e s e n t i n g c h a r a c t e r s (comic  f u n c t i o n t h r o u g h t h e r e a d e r ' s n e e d t o "know" and  " j u d g e , " c r e a t i n g a l i t e r a r y f o r m w h i c h a r o u s e s and  fulfills  74 the  reader's  "desire,"  while  working against  the  reader's  "pattern of experience," even his pattern of reading experience, through parody.  Thus, the "word" that the author presents us in  the Quart Livre is what Bakhtin c a l l 3 a "hetero-directed double voiced word,"39  a  nor  represented  ju3t  the  parodistic narration, not the author's word, words  of  characters,  but  a word  directed towards the expectations of a reader, which depends for its final meaning on these expectations.  We saw that this reader in the Quart Livre is a reader who "indulges" the author by pretending to believe whose desires are gratified satire  him, a reader  through both the "difference" of  (the smiling reader) and the "identity" of humour (the  laughing  reader),  where  the  elements  of  humour predominate  through relativising and desacralising parody.  The "purpose" of the Quart Livre,  in terms of "producing  the pleasure proper to i t 3 kind," of realising its  "entelechy,"  is therefore to produce the ambiguous identification of laughter in the reader.  The mimesis of representation of realism is thus  replaced by a mimesis  of identification,  through a "perilous  balance"40 which evades both "too much" distance or "too much" identity on the part of the reader. skirting  of  what men c a l l  A certain non-committal  "sacred" is  called for,  a "light  touch" which Rabelais calls "joyousness," combined with a common sense rooted in the body and i t 3 least "ideal" functions.  75  F i n a l l y the f u n c t i o n to catharsis and  p.  parody that  tragedy,  depends,  individual,  (humours) (see  of  the  tragic  make  relativising 3acred,  are  tragic  This  comic  with i t s except  as  whose  23).  Panurge)  the  comic n a r r a t i v e  us  that  flaws  laugh  nature  of  comic  "victims"  victims,  become  their  p r i n c i p l e of  victimage:  the  experience (instead this  analagous  " v i c t i m a g e " p r i n c i p l e on w h i c h  tragic  comic  victims  i n Rabelais serves an  but main  only  is  the  a3 t h e s e a r e  "types"  i n fact and  to  a  danger  Chiguanous,  because  p a r o d y , w h i c h opposes  profoundly a n t i t h e t i c a l  unique  characteristics  cruelty  (Dindenault, cry)  not  common  "victimage"  violence,  of  are  the  the the  of  ideal  the and  comic.  76  Notes 1 Here however I am not concerned with an "author" a 3 "initiator of discursive practices" (Foucault, 146), but as a term under which not only l i t e r a r y indications of difference can be ascribed, such as style, but also ideological alignment i n an h i s t o r i c a l l y "charged" atmosphere. 2 Dorothy Coleman uses the term "envisaged reader" to indicate the relationship of the reader to the author's strategy (Coleman, 45-6). The term "postulated reader" might also be used to indicate either authorial strategy or the modern c r i t i c ' s "reconstitution" of a real reading public. The term of Iser, "implied reader," i s however the most general and inclusive one. 3 Thi3 phrase of Victor Hugo, from Les Contemplations (VI, 23), actually refers to the "eclat de r i r e enorme" of Rabelais rather than to his belly-image, but as Hugo elaborates elsewhere (in his Preface to Cromwell and i n his book on Shakespeare) the belly-image i 3 the topographic centre of Rabelais' imagery. Bakhtin points this out i n his "History of Laughter" chapter of his Rabelais (Bakhtin 1968, 123-8) but denies that Hugo understood the "deep optimism," "popular-festive nature," or "epic" style of this imagery. Shlomith Rimmon points out that this term of p a r a l l e l s the term "implied reader." (Rimmon, 54) 4  Genette  5 I am using story (histoire) to mean story "materials," what the Russian formalists called "fabel" and what Seymour Chatman opposes to discourse. For the corresponding terms i n the narratologies of Barthes, Genette and Todorov, see the concordance provided by Rimmon (Rimmon, 35). 5 I am using the terminology provided by Wayne Booth i n his The Rhetoric of F i c t i o n . "Reliable commentary," according to Booth, i s commentary which reflects the perspective of the implied author, not necessarily the perspective of the (reliable) narrator. Included i n the taxonomy of i t s functions are "providing the facts" (summary), "molding beliefs," "relating particulars to the established norms," "heightening significance of events," and "manipulating mood" (Booth, 169205). 7 Booth, i n the Afterword to the 1982 edition of his Rhetoric of F i c t i o n cites Sheldon Sack's work i n revealing the rhetorical role of secondary characters employed by the implied  77 author to reinforce his perspective (Booth,  438).  8 Brecht's famous "Verfremdungseffekt," or "alienation effect," i s meant to destroy the i d e n t i f i c a t i o n and therefore catharsis of the audience effected through dramatic mimesis, i n order that the audience should be free from pathetic manipulation, their c r i t i c a l s p i r i t intact. For this reason his f i r s t c o l l e c t i o n of Schriften zum Theater (1957) wa3 subtitled "Uber eine nicht-aristotelische Dramatik." 9 I w i l l return to this i n my second chapter. Keller claims that the rhetorical situation of oral s t o r y t e l l e r i s the key to modes of digression not only i n the C o u i l l a t r i s story, but also i n the narrative of the Quart Livre as a whole. 10 Booth, again i n h i 3 Afterword (see note 4 above), cites Peter Rabinowitz's work i n making the c r u c i a l d i s t i n c t i o n between "authorial audience" and "narrative audience" (Booth, 423). 11 Here Bergson's theory of laughter might be recalled, with i t s insistance on the importance of avoidance of sympathy with the comic character. 12 "Intersubjectivity" i s a term which suggests both Sartre and Bakhtin, who i n s i s t upon the importance of safe-guarding the moral freedom of both author and reader (cf. Todorov, 90). Here I am simply using i t to reflect the interchange between (selfconscious though ironic) author and (respected though challenged) reader, which makes possible the mutual role-play i n the reading of Rabelais. 13 "Living plot" i s term used by "neo-Aristotelian" Wayne Booth, which reflects the theory of organicism f i r s t proposed by A r i s t o t l e i n his Poetics ( A r i s t o t l e , 52). 14 I am deliberately using the term "horizon of expectation," "Erwartungshorizon" i n the nomenclature of the Rezeptionstheorie of the Constance school, i n conjunction with the .reference to the real ( h i s t o r i c a l ) public of the Quart L i v r e , thereby suggesting that the reader implied by the text has something to do with this real public, and therefore with the h i s t o r i c a l "situation" of the text. 15 This rather unflattering charaterisation writers i s again from the Poetics ( A r i s t o t l e , 49).  of  comic  16 Wolfgang Iser shows i n his analysis of Smollet that the humour, whose origins had been i n allegory (such as i n Bunyan" s Pilgrim's Progress), can be used i n the comic novel (Iser, 734)). The connection between comic character flaw and humour.  78 however, i s my own suggestion. 17 Kenneth Burke, with his concern for rhetorical strategy and motivational situation ("dramatism") i n l i t e r a r y form, sees form, whether "repetitive," "progressive," or " s y l l o g i s t i c , " as a strategic response to the expectations of an audience. He also implutes a certain value to form working against the "categorical" expectations of l i t e r a r y convention (Burke 1953, 124-7; 167-70). 18 Jean P a r i s , however, does not mention the antecedent genre of heroic romance. He simply points out the "synchronic" and "diachronic" structural aspects of the five "foyers" around wich the five books of Rabelais are organised (Paris, 224-5). 19 Burke sees a l l of language as "symbolic action" and refuses to see a r t i n i s o l a t i o n from i t s "appeal" i n an historicl context. Hi3 theory of the d i v i s i o n between "essayistic," more subjective authors and "dramatic" authors (Burke 1953, 193-7), I have applied here to Rabelais. Writers l i k e Rabelais or Diderot, a class of authors Burke does not mention, are "dramatic" authors operating i n a lack of strong social consensus, usually (according to Burke) a condition for " e s s a y i 3 t i c " writers. 20 Kenneth Burke, against the formalism of the New C r i t i c s , developped a "dramatistic" method of l i t e r a r y analysis which regards poetic language as a mode of "symbolic action" not r a d i c a l l y different from any other "rhetorical" strategy based in human "motives." This "symbolic action" i s described i n term.3 strongly reminiscent of A r i s t o t l e : "Act," "Scene," "Agent," "Agency," and "Purpose," are the terms of Burke's dramatistic "pentad" through which a l l descriptions of "symbolic action" based i n human "motives," are f i l t e r e d . 21 Following the method proposed by her husband, Gerard, Raymonde Debray-Genette, i n the introductory paragraph of her essay "Du mode narratif dans les Trois Contes" (Revue d ' h i s t o i r e l i t t e r a i r e de France: j u i l l e t - o c t o b r e 1981) s a y 3 that the "grammaticality" of narrative, i 3 an effective "descriptive" and "metaphorical" way to understand, for instance, "focalisation" (subjunctive mode of the verb) and "omniscience" (indicative mood of the verb). Here though we w i l l l i m i t ourselves to "syntactical" effects determined by the "destinataire". 22 Keller sees the digressions i n the C o u i l l a t r i s 3 t o r y and the "suspense" elements in the Dindenault story as, respectively, "interruptions" and "prolongation" technique with a "time-killing" function, where, the effectiveness of the "timekilling" i s measured by the retention of the audience'3 attention. He therefore imagines that the "written" character of the story is overshadowed by the "oral-3toryteller"  79 rhetorical device.  (Keller, 18-19).  23 i t i s not i n the study of Rabelais, but i n the study of Dostoyevski, that Bakhtin systematically catalogues the effects of "carnivalisation" i n literature: in a 3ense, all c a r n i v a l i s t i c "mesalliances," "profanation," parodie doubles, rites of "discrowning," and a b o l i t i o n of "hierarchical" relationships form a part of t h i 3 "monde a l'envers" which i s the carnival (cf. Bakhtin 1973, 100-7). 24 This story i s of course apocryphal, since know of the poet Francois V i l l o n i n his old age.  nothing  is  25 Bakhtin describes this Saturnalian r i t e as a "crowningdiscrowning, " as an "ambivalent r i t u a l " which expresses the "jolly r e l a t i v i t y of every system and order, every authority and every (hierarchical) position." (Bakhtin 1973, 102). 26 Rene Girard sees a certain d i a l e c t i c i n operation with laughter, an effort to "deny reciprocity" and, at the same time, a restoration of "reciprocity." thus the "superiority" of laughter (emphasized by Bergson and Baudelaire), the feeling of difference from the object of r i d i c u l e , i s replaced, if convulsive laughter continues, by "creeping identity" between laughing subject and ridiculous object (Girard, 128-9). 27 Although Baudelaire see3 i n the "satanic" nature of laughter an expression of superiority of man over man ("chez le lecteur, l a joie de sa superiorite") or even nature, as with the "comigue absolu" or grotesque (Baudelaire, 993) he allows the p o s s i b i l i t y of a "double" nature of laughter, an ambiguity which would allow a redemptive kind of "faiblesse" as well as strength and "orgueil": . . . c'est avec le r i r e que (l'hornme) adoucit quelquefois 3on coeur et 1'attire; car les phenomenes engendres par l a chute deviendront les moyens du rachat. (Baudelaire, 978). 28 Bakhtin makes very clear, not only that "monde represent^" and "monde representant" should be dealt with separately, but also "real author" (what he c a l l s "auteur individu") and "implied author" ("auteur-createur),as a matter of methodology (Bakhtin 1978, 394). He also separates two "chronotope3" (space-time relations) i n the l i t e r a r y work that of the narrative and that of the narration, saying that the participation of the reader i n the l a t t e r i l l u s t r a t e s the penetration of the "real world" (monde representant), a "monde social qui evolue selon 1"Histoire." (Bakhtin 1978, 394-5) 29 Bergson situates his theory of the comic i n a d i a l e c t i c of "tension" ("raideur") and "elasticite," the former being characteristic of the laughed-at object and the latter  80  characteristic of the laughing subject. The laughing subject for Bergson i s "society," since laughter has a social function, that of the punishment ("chatiment") of "raideur" (Bergson, 146). Emphasizing the "indifference" of the laughing "spectator", Bergson ignores the ambivalence and mimetic quality of laughter: he concentrates on the object of r i d i c u l e , and on how and why i t makes us laugh. 30 Pirandello actually distinguishes between the "comic" and the "humoristic," saying that the comic i s the "awertimento del contrario," whereas the "humoristic" i s the "sentimento del contrario," the former being external and the latter characterised by a "reflexion" (Pirandello, 146-7). Irony for him i s "only verbal," saying one thing and meaning another. 31 The f u l l character of laughter i s for Rabelais "popularfestive laughter," which stems of course from the Carnival, "the people laughing i n the public square." (Bakhtin 1968, 474) 32 i am using "double" here to indicate a procedure of antithesis: that an idea (Nature) engenders i t s "antithetical double" (Anti-nature), creating "vividness" (a procedure remarked upon by A r i s t o t l e i n his Rhetoric). 33 This term of Bakhtin tend3 to refer to the "serious," an unambiguous expression whose semantic authority resides i n the speaker. The l y r i c a l genre lends i t s e l f to the "monological," whereas narrative presumes the "dialogical," and includes parody, irony and other procedures which lead to ambiguity and perspectivism i n interpretation of an utterance. A "monological context" i s an unambiguously "serious" ideological context (cf. Bakhtin 1973, 150-69). 34 "Reduced" laughter, within the scheme of Bakhtin's h i s t o r i c a l degeneration of laughter i n the l i t e r a r y genres, coincides, not suprisingly, with the rise of the bourgeoisie (cf. Bakhtin 1968, 101-2). 35 Along with "reduced laughter," when laughter ceases to "belong to the whole people" (Bakhtin 1968, 107), the topography of ambivalent, "public-festive" laughter changes as well: the comedy of manners, etc., with i t s cla33 divisions, privileges the drawing room, and the public square i s l e f t behind (Bakhtin 1973, 107-8). 36 i n Language as Symbolic Action, Kenneth Burke defines man as the symbol-using (or misusing) animal who (among other things) i s "goaded by the s p i r i t of hierarchy" (Burke 1966, 1516). The fact that Rabelais chooses the B e l l y as organising centre of his "world" and not the "head," i 3 significant in that he opposes these "hierarchical goadings" as they organised themselves i n the Gothic medieval culture, with i t s emphasis on  81 hierarchical  authority.  37 The p r i n c i p a l of " v i c t i m a g e . " m e n t i o n e d a t l e n g t h i n t h e work of b o t h B u r k e and Ren6 G i r a r d , i s a n i m p o r t a n t one i n t h e a n a l y s i s of the e f f e c t s upon the r e a d e r of d r a m a t i c ( o r c o m i c ) c o n f l i c t , a s w e l l a s i n t h a n a l y s i s of a l l of what G i r a r d would call "mimetic phenomena. " Girard traces the cause of scapegoating to "mimetic rivalry," and has devoted his " e s s a y i s t i c " L a V i o l e n c e e t l e s a c r e (1977) t o t h i s p r o b l e m , u s i n g t h e t e x t s of Greek t r a g e d y and a n t h r o p o l o g y . 38 wellek and Warren's Theory of Literature defends l i t e r a r y t h e o r y ( p o e t i c s ) a 3 a n e c e s s a r y "organon of methods," i n " u n i v e r s a l t e r m s , " a s a g a i n s t c r i t i c i s m and l i t e r a r y h i s t o r y , concerned with the "individuality: of a work, p e r i o d , e t c . ( W e l l e k and Warren, 7 ) . The a b s t r a c t i o n of " r u l e s of g e n r e , " e t c . , would of c o u r s e f a l l u n d e r t h e c a t e g o r y of "literary theory." 39 The " h e t e r o - d i r e c t e d d o u b l e - v o i c e d word" ( B a k h t i n 1973, 164) i 3 i n f a c t t h e r e s u l t of t h e " d i a l o g i c " n a t u r e of n a r r a t i v e itself, augmented i n i t s effects by polemically "charged" h i s t o r i c a l c o n t e x t ( c f . B a k h t i n 1973, 153-63). 40 i n hypothesis" based upon a m b i g u i t y of possession"  h i s e s s a y on comedy, Rene G i r a r d forms i n w h i c h he p r o p o s e s a g e n e r i c t h e o r y reader-response, w h i c h depends upon a n d i s t a n c e and i d e n t i t y , a " l o s s of autonomy ( G i r a r d , 128).  a "comic of comedy essential and s e l f -  82 Works Cited Rabelais, Francois.  Quart L i v r e.  de Francois Rabelais 1950.  Tome Deuxieme of Oeuvres  Ed. Louis M o l a n d . Paris:  Garnier,  2-208.  Books Aristotle.  Poetics.  Adams.  Critical Theory since Plato.  New York:  Ed. Hazard  Harcourt, Brace, J o v a n o v i c h , 1971.  48-66. Bakhtin, M i k h a i l . Iswolsky. —.  Problems of Dostovevsky's Poetics.  Trad. Daria Olwier.  Gallimard, 1978.  Bergsen, Henri. Le rire: Paris:  Trans. R. W. Rotsel.  Ardis, 1973.  Estheticrue et theorie d u r o m a n . Paris:  Trans. Helene  Cambridge, Mass., and London: MIT Press, 1968.  New York: —.  Rabelais and His World.  Essai sur la signification d u comicrue.  Presses unversitaires de France, 1967.  Booth, W a y n e C. The Rhetoric of Fiction.  Chicago: U n i v e r s i t y  of Chicago Press, 1983. Burke, Kenneth. Hermes, 1953.  Counter-statement.  Los Altos, California:  83  —.  The Philosophy of L i t e r a r y F o r m : Studies i n Symbolic Action.  —.  New York:  Vintage, 1957.  Language as Symbolic Action:  ESsavs on Life. L i t e r a t u r e  a n d M e t h o d . Berkeley: U n i v e r s i t y of California Press, 1966. Caillois, Roger.  M a n a n d the Sacred.  Glencoe, Illinois: Coleman, Dorothy. London:  Trans. M e y e r Bar ash.  The Free Press, 1959. Rabelais:  A Critical S t u d y i n Prose Fiction.  Cambridge U n i v e r s i t y Press, 1971.  Girard, Rene.  "To double business bound":  Essays on  L i t e r a t u r e . M i m e s i s , and Anthropology. Baltimore a n d London:  J o h n s Hopkins UP, 1978.  Iser, Wolfgang. The Implied Reader:  Patterns of  Communication i n Prose Fiction f r o m B u n y a n to Beckett. Baltimore:  J o h n s Hopkins UP, 1974.  Keller, A b r a h a m .  The Telling of Tales i n Rabelais:  his N a r r a t i v e A r t . F r a n k f u r t : Paris, J e a n .  Rabelais a u futur.  Klosterman, 1963.  Paris: Seuil, 1970.  Wellek, Rene a n d A u s t i n W a r r e n . York:  Aspects of  Theory of Literature.  Harcourt, Brace and Company, 1956.  Todorov, Tsvetan.  Critique de la critique:  d' appr en tissage.  Paris: Seuil, 1984.  un roman  Mew  84  Articles Baudelaire, Charles.  "De 1'essence d u r i r e et generalement d u  comique dans les arts plastiques." Paris:  Oeuvres completes.  G a l l i m a r d (Bibliotheque de l a Pleiade), 1961. 975-993.  Foucault, M i c h e l .  "What is a n author?"  Critical Theory since  1965. Ed. Hazard A d a m s a n d Leroy Searle. Florida:  Florida State UP, 1986.  Pirandello, Luigi. Rome:  Talahassee,  138-48.  "L'umorismo." Saggi. Poesie. Scritti. Varie.  M o n d a d o r i , 1960.  Rimmon, Shlomith.  17-60.  "A Comprehensive Theory of N a r r a t i v e . "  Poetics a n d Theory of L i t e r a t u r e (1976):  33-62.  

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