Learning and Literacy in Medieval England and Abroadby Sarah Rees Jones (Editor), S. Rees-Jones (Editor)
How did people know what they knew, and learn what they learnt? As Derek Pearsall's introduction makes clear this is the primary focus of this collection of essays published in celebration of the thirtieth anniversary of the foundation of the Centre for Medieval Studies at the University of York. The learning materials included range from grammar books to mystery plays, and from court records to monastic chronicles, as well as liturgical and devotional texts. But the essays are not only concerned with texts alone, but with the broader and often fluid social environments in which learning took place. Many of the papers therefore question the validity of some distinctions habitually used in the discussion of medieval culture, such as the opposition between orality and literacy, between Latin and the vernacular or between secular and religious. All but one of the contributors are literary scholars and historians who completed their post-graduate work at the University of York. They are Joyce Hill, John Arnold, Linda Olsen, Janet Burton, Patricia Cullum, Katherine Kerby-Fulton, Deborah Cannon, Pamela King, and Stacey Gee. Katherine Zieman, although not a York graduate, is a most welcome contributor to the volume.
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