Chaucer In Context

Chaucer In Context

by S. H. Rigby
     
 

Everyone knows of the Canterbury Tales, acknowledged as one of the leading texts of the English Canon. Consensus about them ends there. Amongst the most written about works of English literature, they still defy categorisation. Was Chaucer a poet of profound religious piety or a sceptic who questioned all religious and moral certainties? Do his pilgrims reflect the

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Overview

Everyone knows of the Canterbury Tales, acknowledged as one of the leading texts of the English Canon. Consensus about them ends there. Amongst the most written about works of English literature, they still defy categorisation. Was Chaucer a poet of profound religious piety or a sceptic who questioned all religious and moral certainties? Do his pilgrims reflect the actual society of his day, or were they a product of an already well-established literary tradition and convention? Was he a defender of women or a misogynist, who reproduced the antifeminism characteristic of his time? Did his writings present a challenge to the dominant social outlook of late Medieval England or reinforce the status quo? This stimulating new book surveys and assesses these competing critical approaches to Chaucer's work, emphasising the need to see Chaucer in historical context; the context of the social and political concerns of his own day. Writing as a historian, Rigby brings refreshing new insights to this contested old chestnut and Chaucer, and his Tales, are revealed to us as Chaucer's contemporaries would have seen them.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780719042362
Publisher:
Manchester University Press
Publication date:
01/01/2004
Series:
Manchester Medieval Studies
Pages:
224
Product dimensions:
0.50(w) x 5.50(h) x 8.50(d)

Meet the Author

S.H. Rigby is Senior Lecturer in History at the University of Manchester

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