By Tison Pugh
Geoffrey Chaucer is commonly thought of the daddy of English literature. This creation starts with a overview of his lifestyles and the cultural milieu of fourteenth-century England after which expands into analyses of such significant works because the Parliament of Fowls, Troilus and Criseyde , and, in fact, the Canterbury stories , analyzing them along a variety of lesser recognized verses. one of many early hurdles confronted by way of scholars of Chaucer is reaching ease and fluency with heart English, yet Tison Pugh offers a transparent and concise pronunciation advisor and a word list to assist beginner readers navigate Chaucer's literature in its unique language. extra severe equipment, together with a survey of the writer's assets and short summaries of significant plot traces, make An creation to Geoffrey Chaucer an imperative source for college students, lecturers, and an individual who has ever desired to study extra approximately this important determine of English literature.
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Extra resources for An Introduction to Geoffrey Chaucer
The bewildered poet remains mystified and wonders if he has been summoned to the heavens to serve either the Judeo-Christian God (in the manner of Enoch and Elijah in early Jewish literature) or Jupiter (in the manner of Ganymede and Romulus in Greek and Roman mythology). ” (614–19) The eagle is transporting Chaucer to the House of Fame to reward him for his labor and devotion to love (641–99); there the poet will learn even more about the ways of romance. With this introduction of romance themes into the dream vision, Chaucer shifts the poem from its epic material to a new interest in romance and thus underscores his need to suc- 18 An Introduction to Geoffrey Chaucer ceed in multiple artistic venues if he is to secure his position among the great authors throughout history.
Despite these missing wives, Chaucer’s Legend of Good Women intriguingly exposes the gendered dynamics of mythic literature and its influence on his conception of himself as a writer of the fourteenth century. This collection of legendary materials presents womanly virtue as dependent upon suffering, betrayal, and passivity, as it concomitantly portrays masculine misconduct in amatory affairs. Regrettably, since Legend of Good Women lacks the expected ending of a dream vision—which here would likely see Chaucer returning to Cupid and Alceste’s court, or at least waking and pondering the meaning of his dream—it is difficult to draw conclusions about Chaucer’s personal stance in his treatment of these many good women.
Like medieval English society, Chaucer’s avian community is highly stratified, with birds of prey at the top of the social caste structure, followed by worm eaters, and then waterfowl (323–29). A catalog of birds follows, in which each species is quickly characterized (330–64), until Chaucer tires of the list and breaks it off with a dismissive “What shulde I seyn? Of foules every kynde” (365). Through Chaucer’s quick shift in tone, Parliament of Fowls plays with the likelihood of dream visions slipping into tendentiousness, and Chaucer segues immediately into the unfolding narrative action.
An Introduction to Geoffrey Chaucer by Tison Pugh