Resumen: This dissertation studies the parody of the sentimental romance in Fernando de Rojas's La Celestina (1499). In the first chapter, “Parody of Courtly Love According to the Critics,” I examine previous studies of parodic elements in La Celestina. Although most critics agree that courtly love is parodied in this work, not all concur as to the precise dimension of the parody, the number of characters that are parodied, or Rojas's purpose in using parody. At the end of this chapter, I present my own perspective on the subject, highlighting the contribution of my research to the existing scholarship.
In the second chapter, “Parody: Definitions and Functions,” I outline a concept of parody that will be used to support my analysis and conclusions. The theorists and critics followed include Luis Beltrán Almería, Túa Blesa, José Dominguez Caparrós, June Hall Martin, Linda Hutcheon, and Margaret Rose. The definition that I elaborate enables me to argue that parody in La Celestina is a tool used as a form of critical discourse.
In the third chapter “Courtly Love in the Sentimental Romance”, I explain the representation of courtly love in five fifteenth-century romances: Siervo litre de amor (1440), Tractado de Amores de Arnalte y Lucenda (1491), Cárcel de amor (1492), Grimalte y Gradissa (1495) and Grisel y Mirabella (1495).
In the fourth chapter, I strive to show that through inversions, absurd situations, distortions, ironies, jokes, antithesis, exaggerations, sarcasm and incongruous descriptions, Rojas parodies not only the typical elements of courtly love, but also all the characters and each of the main elements that define the conventions of sentimental romance. I also demonstrate that parody in La Celestina is wide-spread and not sporadic as most critics have said. Finally, I argue that Rojas's purpose is to entertain and to engage in literary innovation and criticism, not merely to provide a moral lesson for young people on the dangers of love. The sentimental romance is used by Rojas as an instrument of artistic experimentation; his parody surpasses the genre transforming it into something unique.