Chaucer and the Jews / Edition 1

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"Jews were expelled from England in 1290, about half a century before Geoffrey Chaucer's birth. But Jews and their culture continued to play in important role in the English Christian imagination throughout the late Middle Ages, in the work of Chaucer and his contemporaries. How were writers enabled to represent Jews in their absence, and why did they want to do so?" These questions are explored for the first time in a pioneering collection of essays edited by Sheila Delany. Contributions from eminent historians and literary scholars examine the influence of theology, politics, folklore, visual art, and domestic and social life in producing a multivalent tradition of representing Jews in medieval English literature. Chaucer's work is the main focus of the volume, and other late medieval texts offer further avenues of investigation. Two essays on current pedagogy conclude the volume, bringing its subject into the range of immediate concerns of teachers today. Chaucer and the Jews will be a discovery for readers seeking a fresh perspective on Jewish studies, medieval literature, and life in medieval England.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780415938822
  • Publisher: Taylor & Francis
  • Publication date: 6/28/2002
  • Series: Multicultural Middle Ages Series
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 272
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.75 (d)

Table of Contents

Editor's Introduction
Pt. I Chaucer Texts 1
Ch. 1 The Jewish Mother-in-Law: Synagoga and the Man of Law's Tale 3
Ch. 2 The Pardoner's "Holy Jew" 25
Ch. 3 Chaucer's Prioress, the Jews, and the Muslims 43
Ch. 4 "Jewes Werk" in Sir Thopas 59
Ch. 5 Postcolonial Chaucer and the Virtual Jew 69
Pt. II Chaucerian Contexts 87
Ch. 6 Chaucer and the Translation of the Jewish Scriptures 89
Ch. 7 Reading Biblical Outlaws: The "Rise of David" Story in the Fourteenth Century 109
Ch. 8 Robert Holcot on the Jews 133
Ch. 9 The Protean Jew in the Vernon Manuscript 145
Ch. 10 The Siege of Jerusalem and Augustinian Historians: Writing About Jews in Fourteenth-Century England 165
Ch. 11 "House Devil, Town Saint": Anti-Semitism and Hagiography in Medieval Suffolk 185
Pt. III Chaucer, Jews, and Us 211
Ch. 12 Englishness and Medieval Anglo-Jewry 213
Ch. 13 Teaching Chaucer to the "Cursed Folk of Herod" 229
Ch. 14 Positively Medieval: Teaching as a Missionary Activity 237
Contributors 247
Selected Bibliography 251
Index 257
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