The pardoners prologue and Tale: Abuse in the Medieval Church by Pardoners

Topics: Rhetoric, Abuse, Confession Pages: 2 (1012 words) Published: January 7, 2015
By referring closely to the extract and other appropriately selected parts of the text, and by making use of relevant external contextual information on the abuse of power by pardoners in the medieval church, examine the poetic methods which Chaucer use to present such abuse. Chaucer’s presents his Medieval Pardoner as a compulsive liar, a fraud and an abuser; however in the form of confession the Pardoner reveals how he specifically abuses the power that the medieval church has given him. Can we believe someone who has admitted to being exploitive and deceitful? In this essay I will explore the abuse of power by pardoners in the medieval church presented by Chaucer’s poetic methods, whilst also consider relevant external contextual information. Throughout the Prologue Chaucer exemplifies the Medieval confessio; this allows the Pardoner to expose his scandalous and blasphemous abuse of power. The Pardoner boastingly reveals that he is a “ful vicious man”, telling the audience that he would usually only tell stories for money. “ …and that is avarce. But though myself be gilty in that sinne,” This Medieval confessio shows the first hand abuse to the church and creates a very arrogant tone. The Pardoner is aware that he is acting against the church and exploiting the churches people but yet he confesses to his audience in order to provoke a sense of drama and controversy. This act of confession discloses to us exactly what a Medieval Pardoner should not being doing, they were originally someone who collected money on behalf of a religous foundation but Chaucer demonstrates many saw the opportunity to extort the money for their own benefit thus abusing the church. As the Pardoner reveals, the majority of his claims are untrue and his relics are hugely dubious; despite this the Chaucer uses rhetorical devices in order to allow the Pardoner to persuades his audience and fuel his abuse against the church. The use of discourse markers creates a tone of authority and...
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