Morality In Henryson's The Cock And The Fox

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Over time, Henryson’s clear narrative to morality connection has become less common. Taking the Nun’s Priest’s Tale from The Canterbury Tales by way of example, the fable form, which Chaucer parodies, is distorted, destabilising the connection between story and morality. Crucially, the Nun’s Priest’s Tale is the same moral fable told in Henryson’s The cock and the Fox, meaning a comparative analysis of the distinct methodologies used are all the more intriguing. Through Chaucer’s constructing of complex subjectivity (Narkiss, 56) he disconnects the morality communicated at the conclusion of the tale from the story that preceded it. Referring solely to the influences of Chaunticleer and Pertelote, as the Nun’s Priest will be given specific context…show more content…
The complications in their relationship has one significant impact on the text, it takes away from the moral objective. Just as Henryson presented his story with the aim of exemplifying a moral point, so too does the Nun’s Priest. However, he deviates from the point allow the story to become inhabited by a host of alternate meaning and metaphor. Similarly, to the Nun’s Priest’s Tale, Virginia Woolf’s Flush uses complex subjectivity to move past simple narrative to moral didacticism. Flush’s story is told primarily from a “dog's point of view” (Smith, 352). The expression of the dog’s consciousness is shown in the emphasis on the sensory experience of smell, which is keenly felt in dogs, and though prioritising his perspective (Smith, 349). Differing from Chaucer though, as Craig Smith has noted “Flush… is neither specifically human nor specifically humanistic in its agenda” (349) making it distinct from the fully humanistic goals of both Henryson and Chaucer. Accordingly, Woolf’s animal subject is the most difficult to extract any kind of clear morality from. Arguably, the inability to identify with the animal experience is the primary cause of
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