Matthew Gumpert Supplementarity and the Sonnet A Reading of Ronsard's Les Amours Diverses 45 [these imitations are mere nonsense] Lysistrata l.1591 Introduction: Examples and Supplements Les Amours Diverses 45 is almost certainly Ronsard's most obscene poem. Critics in the past have not been kind to it. And while it appears to have lost much of its shock value today, it continues to be neglected. But there may be something to learn from this sonnet, and this neglect. One of the questions we might want to ask is whether it is the subject itself we find distasteful, or the fact that it is represented so explicitly. It is possible that what sets Ronsard's sonnet apart, and has made it something of an embarrassment to its readers, is simply the explicitness with which it tells the story most sonnets--and in particular Petrarchan sonnets--tell: that of desire as supplementarity, a matter of substitution and deferral. Looked at in this way, the scenario of substitution sketched out by Ronsard's sonnet appears, perversely enough, less perverse. Read against the background of early modern writings on sex as something scandalous, Ronsard's Les Amours Diverses 45 may remind us to what extent there is something
French Forum – University of Nebraska Press
Published: Mar 29, 2005
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