•  
  •  
 

Abstract

In his article "Male Same-Sex Desire in the Romances of de Troyes" Basil A. Clark extends René Girard's theory of mimetic desire to explore a homocentric subtext in Chrétien de Troyes's Erec and Enide, Lancelot or The Knight of the Cart, The Knight with the Lion or Yvain, and The Story of the Grail or Perceval. While male same-sex desire in these narratives is consistently latent, an argument for its presence is made through Girard's hermeneutic, which postulates that someone (the subject) desires someone or something (the object) not only for its own sake but because someone else (the mediator) desires it also, and this third party's desires can expand to include desire for this person himself. In the case of both a male subject and a male mediator, this desire is axiomatically homocentric as in the case of a courtly knight's love suit of a lady: the knight's desire for the lady is intensified by that of the other male and is read as a liminal desire for the other male himself.