Between Medieval Men: Male Friendship and Desire in Early Medieval English Literature

Overview

Between Medieval Men argues for the importance of synoptically examining the whole range of same-sex relations in the Anglo-Saxon period, revisiting well-known texts and issues (as well as material often considered marginal) from a radically different perspective. The introductory chapters first lay out the premises underlying the book and its critical context, then emphasise the need to avoid modern cultural assumptions about both male-female and male-male relationships, and underline the paramount place of ...

See more details below
Hardcover
$115.80
BN.com price
(Save 3%)$120.00 List Price
Other sellers (Hardcover)
  • All (1) from $132.08   
  • New (1) from $132.08   
Sending request ...

Overview

Between Medieval Men argues for the importance of synoptically examining the whole range of same-sex relations in the Anglo-Saxon period, revisiting well-known texts and issues (as well as material often considered marginal) from a radically different perspective. The introductory chapters first lay out the premises underlying the book and its critical context, then emphasise the need to avoid modern cultural assumptions about both male-female and male-male relationships, and underline the paramount place of homosocial bonds in Old English literature. Part II then investigates the construction of and attitudes to same-sex acts and identities in ethnographic, penitential, and theological texts, ranging widely throughout the Old English corpus and drawing on Classical, Medieval Latin, and Old Norse material. Part III expands the focus to homosocial bonds in Old English literature in order to explore the range of associations for same-sex intimacy and their representation in literary texts such as Genesis A, Beowulf, The Battle of Maldon, The Dream of the Rood, The Phoenix, and AElfric's Lives of Saints.

During the course of the book's argument, David Clark uncovers several under-researched issues and suggests fruitful approaches for their investigation. He concludes that, in omitting to ask certain questions of Anglo-Saxon material, in being too willing to accept the status quo indicated by the extant corpus, in uncritically importing invisible (because normative) heterosexist assumptions in our reading, we risk misrepresenting the diversity and complexity that a more nuanced approach to issues of gender and sexuality suggests may be more genuinely characteristic of the period.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Demonstrates qualities of scrupulous scholarship and careful thinking about difficult historical problems together with an alert sense of literary implications" — A.S.G Edwards, Times Literary Supplement

"Smart, elegant and ambitious" — Robert Mills, Times Higher Education Supplement

"A sober, penetrating and comprehensive study of Anglo-Saxon literature...Clark's scholarly acumen waves like a banner above the whole project...This is an impressive book by any standard, written by an equally impressive scholar." — Bill Burgwinkle, Review of English Studies

"[An] important study." —Gender & History

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780199558155
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 5/1/2009
  • Pages: 240
  • Product dimensions: 6.30 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

David Clark is Lecturer in Old English at the University of Leicester. He has published several articles on vengeance and heroism in Old English and Old Norse literature, and is co-editor of two collections of work on medievalism: Old Norse Made New: Essays on the Post-Medieval Reception of Old Norse Literature and Culture (Viking Society for Northern Research, 2007), and Anglo-Saxon Culture and the Modern Imagination (Boydell & Brewer, forthcoming 2010). He is co-editing a special issue of Arthurian Literature: Blood, Sex, Malory: Essays on the Morte Darthur, its sources and reception (Boydell & Brewer, forthcoming 2011). His current major project is a study of male friendship across the medieval period.

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

Pt. I Introductory

Introduction

1 A fine romance?: Wulf and Eadwacer, The Wife's Lament, and The Husband's Message

Pt. II Same-Sex Acts and Identities

2 Germanic Pederasty : The Evidence of the Classical Ethnographers

3 Attitudes to same-sex activity in Anglo-Saxon England: earg, the Penitential, and OE Badling

4 The changing face of Sodom, part I: The Latin traditon

5 The changing face of Sodom, part II: the vernacular tradition

Pt. III Homosocial bonds in Old English literature

6 Destructive desire: sexual themes and same-sex relations in Genesis A

7 Heroic desire?: Male relations in Beowulf, The Battle of Maldon, and The Dream of the Rood

8 Monastic sexuality and same-sex procreation in The Phoenix

9 Saintly desire?: same sex relations in Aelfric's Lives of Saints

10 Unorthodox desire: the anonymous Life of Euphrosyne and the Colloquies of Aelfric

Bibliography

Index

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)