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

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

by David Clark
 

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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

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 Alfric's Lives of Saints.

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

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780199671175
Publisher:
Oxford University Press, USA
Publication date:
04/01/2013
Pages:
244
Product dimensions:
6.10(w) x 9.20(h) x 0.70(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.

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