The Complete Fables | Critical Essay by Annabel Patterson

This literature criticism consists of approximately 46 pages of analysis & critique of The Complete Fables.
This section contains 13,579 words
(approx. 46 pages at 300 words per page)
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Critical Essay by Annabel Patterson

SOURCE: "Fables of Power: The Sixteenth Century," in Fables of Power: Aesopian Writing and Political History, pp. 45-80. Durham: Duke University Press, 1991.

In the following essay, Patterson refutes the contention that fables were meant exclusively as moral or educational tools, arguing instead that the English fables of the Middles Ages and Renaissance were intended as political commentary.

O wretch that thy fortunes should moralize
Esops fables, and make tales, prophesies.
Thou 'art the swimming dog whom shadows cosened,
And div'st, neare drowning, for what's vanished.

John Donne: Satire 5

The history of the fable in the sixteenth century is, from one perspective, continuous with that of the late middle ages. John Lydgate's The Horse, the Goose, and the Sheep, which included comments on the fable's function as a medium of communication, "under covert," of social protest by the poor and...

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This section contains 13,579 words
(approx. 46 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Annabel Patterson
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