Bulletin of Hispanic Studies

‘A guisa de varón’: Masculinity and Genre in the Poema de mio Cid

Bulletin of Hispanic Studies (2013), 90, (5), 539–556.

Abstract

This article examines the interplay between masculinity and genre in the Poema de mio Cid. Recent critical readings have correctly recognized the impact on this epic poem of courtly and chivalric culture, often noting the interference of the main courtly narrative genre, romance, on the poem's treatment of women. In contrast, I shall argue that, rather than in terms of interference, the relationship of the Poema de mio Cid to romance is best described as a conscious dialogue, and that a crucial element in such a dialogue is the poem's construction of masculinity. The Poema de mio Cid, I contend, tries to demonstrate the relevance of the epic genre to respond to pressing questions posed by romance, and as a consequence develops a new epic masculinity.

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Pascual-Argente, Clara