burden of responsibility, love
In three of the early sections of the Libro de buen amor, Juan Ruiz explains to his public how, for various reasons, he is conditioned to love women. In stanzas 71-76 he uses the unimpeachable authority of Aristotle to argue that men and animals are biologically determined to seek 'juntamiento con fenbra plazentera' (st. 71d), and since he is a man like any other, it is natural, perhaps even inevitable, that from time to time he too should feel the attraction of the opposite sex. Paraphrasing St Paul (I Thessalonians 5.21), the Archpriest tells us rather cheekily that one must taste things in order to be in a position to decide whether they are good or bad. Only then can one reject what is bad and retain what is good.
Original Publication Citation
Williams, L. "The Burden of Responsibility in the Libro de buen amor", The Modern Language Review, Vol. 85, No 1 (199), pp. 57-64.
BYU ScholarsArchive Citation
Williams, Lynn, "The Burden of Responsibility in the Libro de Buen Amor" (1990). All Faculty Publications. 1188.
Modern Humanities Research Association
Spanish and Portuguese
© 1990 Modern Humanities Research Association. The original publication may be found at http://www.jstor.org/stable/3732795.
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