Middle English Literature by Christopher Cannon | Hardcover | Barnes & Noble
Middle English Literature / Edition 1

Middle English Literature / Edition 1

by Christopher Cannon
     
 

ISBN-10: 0745624413

ISBN-13: 9780745624419

Pub. Date: 04/15/2008

Publisher: Wiley

This book provides a boldly original account of Middle English literature from the Norman Conquest to the beginning of the sixteenth century. It argues that these centuries are, in fundamental ways, the momentous period in our literary history, for they are the long moment in which the category of literature itself emerged as English writing began to insist, for

Overview

This book provides a boldly original account of Middle English literature from the Norman Conquest to the beginning of the sixteenth century. It argues that these centuries are, in fundamental ways, the momentous period in our literary history, for they are the long moment in which the category of literature itself emerged as English writing began to insist, for the first time, that it floated free of any social reality or function.

This book also charts the complex mechanisms by which English writing acquired this power in a series of linked close readings of both canonical and more obscure texts. It encloses those readings in five compelling accounts of much broader cultural areas, describing, in particular, the productive relationship of Middle English writing to medieval technology, insurgency, statecraft and cultural place, concluding with an in depth account of the particular arguments, emphases and techniques English writers used to claim a wholly new jurisdiction for their work.

Both this history and its readings are everywhere informed by the most exciting developments in recent Middle English scholarship as well as literary and cultural theory. It serves as an introduction to all these areas as well as a contribution, in its own right, to each of them.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780745624419
Publisher:
Wiley
Publication date:
04/15/2008
Series:
PCHL-Polity Cultural History of Literature Series
Pages:
256
Product dimensions:
6.10(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.00(d)

Table of Contents


Illustrations     vii
Abbreviations     viii
A Note on Texts and Quotations     ix
Acknowledgements     x
Introduction     1
Technology     8
Romance     12
Confession     27
Printing     35
Insurgency     40
Complaint     43
Satire     58
The rise of English     67
Statecraft     72
Censorship     75
Propaganda     86
Counsel     97
Place     105
The schoolroom     108
Religious communities     117
The household     123
Cities and towns     132
The way or the street     143
Jurisdiction     150
The church     153
Laughter     164
The aesthetic     173
Resources for Study     187
Chronology     191
Notes     197
References     220
Index     245

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