I couldn’t agree more that Chretien is being extremely sarcastic. The more I read, the more obvious it started to appear. In the beginning I was unsure about the story and thought it was a bit ridiculous, however as I continued I started to piece together his motives.
What I found to be Chretien’s most sarcastic moment was at the very end of the story when Erec becomes King and he receives the cloak. Like we said in class, receiving the cloak was a huge award as it stood for the knowledge of music, astronomy, geometry, and arithmetic. Bestowing this cloak to Erec seems in itself absurd, for the entire story elaborates on his lack of knowledge and wisdom, and his stubbornness. Though he completes this journey and defeats this evil part within himself, this internal struggle, I don't see his character making progress.
Chretien could potentially be using this story to make a mockery out of the entire time period and even the elements of the genre. Erec’s knightly quest, and his love for Enide I think are all so richly built behind sarcasm.