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Literature in English, British Isles

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Articles 1 - 30 of 131

Full-Text Articles in Medieval Studies

Ofermod And Aristocratic Chivalry In J.R.R. Tolkien's The Lord Of The Rings, Amber Dunai Oct 2019

Ofermod And Aristocratic Chivalry In J.R.R. Tolkien's The Lord Of The Rings, Amber Dunai

Journal of Tolkien Research

This paper explores connections between J.R.R. Tolkien’s 1953 Essays and Studies publication The Homecoming of Beorhtnoth Beorhthelm’s Son and representations of ofermod and aristocratic “chivalry” in The Lord of the Rings. Focusing on the motivations and leadership-related decisions of Denethor and Faramir in The Lord of the Rings, this paper argues that Faramir's behavior and motivations, despite Denethor’s implications to the contrary, cannot be described in terms of ofermod regardless of the risk that his choice to reject the Ring appears to pose to Gondor. By contrast, Denethor and his son Boromir represent the ...


Imperatrix, Domina, Rex: Conceptualizing The Female King In Twelfth-Century England, Coral Lumbley Oct 2019

Imperatrix, Domina, Rex: Conceptualizing The Female King In Twelfth-Century England, Coral Lumbley

Medieval Feminist Forum: A Journal of Gender and Sexuality

This article draws on methods from transgender theory, historicist literary studies, and visual analysis of medieval sealing practices to show that Empress Matilda of England was controversially styled as a female king during her career in the early to mid twelfth century. While the chronicle Gesta Stephani castigates Matilda’s failure to engage in sanctioned gendered behaviors as she waged civil war to claim her inherited throne, Matilda’s seal harnesses both masculine and feminine signifiers in order to proclaim herself both king and queen. While Matilda’s transgressive gender position was targeted by her detractors during her lifetime, the ...


John Gardner’S Grendel: The Importance Of Community In Making Moral Art, Catherine C. Cooper May 2019

John Gardner’S Grendel: The Importance Of Community In Making Moral Art, Catherine C. Cooper

University of New Orleans Theses and Dissertations

John Gardner’s Grendel examines the ways in which humans make meaning out of their lives. By changing the original Beowulf monster into a creature who constantly questions the conflicting narratives set before him, Gardner encourages us to confront these tensions also. However, his emphasis on Grendel’s alienation helps us realize that community is essential to creating meaning. Most obviously, community creates relationships that foster a sense of moral obligation between its members, even in the face of the type of uncertainty felt by Grendel. Moreover, community cannot exist without dialogue, which perpetually stimulates the imagination to respond to ...


Physicality And Spirituality In Riddle 26, Corinne Mccumber May 2019

Physicality And Spirituality In Riddle 26, Corinne Mccumber

Honors Capstone Projects

Riddle 26, an otherwise-unnamed poem in the 10th-century Old English collection known as The Exeter Book, suggests tension and interplay between its physical form and its meaning. Scholars accept that the riddle’s speaker describes the creation of a religious manuscript, but while physical processes drive the poem’s narrative structure, the speaker ends by focusing on the knowledge that the described religious text contains. As John Hines summarizes, the Old English riddles “demonstrate a keen eye for and dramatically imaginative appreciation of the real world in which the authors and readers lived: both its natural and its manufactured components ...


"We Are Strangers In This Life": Theology, Liminality, And The Exiled In Anglo-Saxon Literature, Nathan John Haydon May 2019

"We Are Strangers In This Life": Theology, Liminality, And The Exiled In Anglo-Saxon Literature, Nathan John Haydon

Theses and Dissertations

In “‘We Are Strangers in this Life’: Theology, Liminality, and the Exiled in Anglo-Saxon Literature,” I analyze the theme of exile in the theological literature of the Anglo-Saxon era as a way of conveying the spiritual condition of eschatological separation. The anthropological theory of liminality will be applied in this dissertation as a way of contextualizing the existence of the exiled, and the multiple ways in which exile is enacted. The intervention of the theory of liminality in this dissertation offers a methodology and vocabulary for assessing what exile means in terms of a spiritual identity, how it operates in ...


Reading The Readers : Analyses Of Shakespearean And Cervantine Characters As (Dys)Functional Readers., Erin Shannon O'Reilly May 2019

Reading The Readers : Analyses Of Shakespearean And Cervantine Characters As (Dys)Functional Readers., Erin Shannon O'Reilly

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

This dissertation analyzes how the protagonists of Don Quixote and The Tempest perform the act of reading. It explores how the authors create interpretive communities within their works and bring them into conflict in order to foreground the dysfunctionality of particular types of reading. While functional readers are capable of reading among and beyond diverse interpretive communities, dysfunctional readers operate within a single community to the exclusion of other possible interpretations. Chapter One examines Cervantes’s creation of multiple interpretive communities within the first six chapters of Don Quixote, and how Don Quixote acts as dysfunctional reader through his inability ...


“Glossing” The Text: Gendered Biblical Interpretation In Chaucer’S Canterbury Tales, Karen Knudson Apr 2019

“Glossing” The Text: Gendered Biblical Interpretation In Chaucer’S Canterbury Tales, Karen Knudson

Scholar Week 2016 - present

Not available.


Interview Of Kevin J. Harty, Ph.D., Kevin J. Harty Ph.D., Meghan Skiles Apr 2019

Interview Of Kevin J. Harty, Ph.D., Kevin J. Harty Ph.D., Meghan Skiles

All Oral Histories

Dr. Kevin J. Harty was born in Brooklyn, New York in 1948. He grew up in Brooklyn until his family moved to Chicago when he was about twelve years old. His father worked for the telephone company, which spurred the family’s move to Chicago, and his mother stayed home and cared for the family. Dr. Harty attended high school in the suburbs of Chicago, graduating when he was fifteen and a half years old. Between high school and college, he worked for a year in a department store, and briefly considered going into the fashion industry. He attended Marquette ...


Englands Happie Queene: Female Rulers In Early English History, Emily Benes Apr 2019

Englands Happie Queene: Female Rulers In Early English History, Emily Benes

Honors Theses, University of Nebraska-Lincoln

This paper examines the historical records and later literature surrounding three early mythic and historical British queens: Albina, mythic founder of Albion; Cordelia, pre-Roman queen regnant in British legend; and Boudica, the British leader of a first-century CE rebellion against the Romans. My work focuses on who these queens were, what powers they were given, and the mythos around them. I examine when they appear in the historical record and when their stories are expanded upon, and how those stories were influenced by the political culture of England through the early seventeenth century. In particular, I examine English attitudes toward ...


Desire, Frustration, And Resolution In The Ending(S) Of Troilus And Criseyde, Kenny Martin Feb 2019

Desire, Frustration, And Resolution In The Ending(S) Of Troilus And Criseyde, Kenny Martin

SMU Journal of Undergraduate Research

This essay analyzes the final stanzas of Chaucer’s Troilus and Criseyde in order to challenge the critical commonplace that the poem’s ending is fraught, fragmented, unsatisfactory, or ultimately inconclusive. It questions the traditional view that the ending is a conspicuous departure from the poetic mode of the earlier poem, as well as the view that the final stanzas are dominated by an ideological struggle between earthly and divine love. Through a close reading of the final five stanzas of the poem—and with particular attention to their echoes throughout the larger work— the essay seeks to elucidate how ...


Hrothgar And Wealhtheow: An Onomastic Approach To A Story Of Good Governance, D. Marie Nelson Jan 2019

Hrothgar And Wealhtheow: An Onomastic Approach To A Story Of Good Governance, D. Marie Nelson

Journal of Literary Onomastics

No abstract.


Place-Names And Politics In The Awntyrs Off Arthure, Andrew Breeze Jan 2019

Place-Names And Politics In The Awntyrs Off Arthure, Andrew Breeze

Journal of Literary Onomastics

No abstract.


Permanent Functions Of Characters’ Proper Names In Harry Potter, Martyna Gibka Jan 2019

Permanent Functions Of Characters’ Proper Names In Harry Potter, Martyna Gibka

Journal of Literary Onomastics

No abstract.


"The Double Sorwe Of Troilus": Experimentation Of The Chivalric And Tragic Genres In Chaucer And Shakespeare, Rena Patel Jan 2019

"The Double Sorwe Of Troilus": Experimentation Of The Chivalric And Tragic Genres In Chaucer And Shakespeare, Rena Patel

Scripps Senior Theses

The tumulus tale of Troilus and his lover Cressida has left readers intrigued in renditions written by both Geoffrey Chaucer and William Shakespeare due to their subversive nature of the authors’ chosen generic forms. Chaucer’s Troilus and Criseyde challenges the expectations and limitations of the narrative of the chivalric romance. Shakespeare took the story and turned Troilus and Cressida into one of his famous “problem plays” by challenging his audience’s expectations of the tragic genre. I endeavor to draw attention to the ways in which both Chaucer and Shakespeare use the conventions of the chivalric romance and tragedy ...


How The ‘Abortion Miracle’ Motif In Medieval Irish Hagiographies Structured Gender Roles In Relation To Female Reproductivity And Sexual Sin, Lora Lynn Horner Dec 2018

How The ‘Abortion Miracle’ Motif In Medieval Irish Hagiographies Structured Gender Roles In Relation To Female Reproductivity And Sexual Sin, Lora Lynn Horner

Essential Studies UNDergraduate Showcase

Four Irish Saints are accredited to performing abortions, otherwise known as the ‘Abortion Miracle’ motif. These four Saints are St. Brigid of Kildare, Ciarán of Saigir, Áed mac Bricc, and Cainnech of Aghoboe. In each of these four Saints lives they share a similar motif in which they bless a mother’s womb resulting in the mother no longer being pregnant. These ‘abortion miracles’ created structured gender roles in which a masculine figure would partake in the intervention of a female and a female’s reproductivity. The intervention of the Saints would come when the women would start to become ...


Covetousness In Book 5 Of Confessio Amantis: A Medieval Precursor To Neoliberalism, Jeffery G. Stoyanoff Sep 2018

Covetousness In Book 5 Of Confessio Amantis: A Medieval Precursor To Neoliberalism, Jeffery G. Stoyanoff

Accessus

In Book 5 of John Gower’s Confessio Amantis, Genius’s extended discussion of Covetousness demonstrates how this subtype of Avarice leads to the ruin of the networks of collectives that make up society. Interestingly, the process by which Covetousness damages the collectives that make up these networks looks a lot like the neoliberalism that has come to dominate a number of governments in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. Gower’s tales trace the spread of this sin from the top of society to the bottom; from the highly public to the intimately personal. In all scenarios, Covetousness is a ...


“Dyrne Langað”: Secret Longing And Homo-Amory In Beowulf And J.R.R. Tolkien’S The Lord Of The Rings, Christopher Vaccaro Aug 2018

“Dyrne Langað”: Secret Longing And Homo-Amory In Beowulf And J.R.R. Tolkien’S The Lord Of The Rings, Christopher Vaccaro

Journal of Tolkien Research

“‘Dyrne Langað’: Secret Longing and Homo-amory in Beowulf and J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings” investigates the close “homoamorous” relationship between Frodo and Samwise, employing a close reading of select passages from the eighth-century English poem, Beowulf. The argument begins with a clarification of terms. Afterwards, it focuses upon the cruces related to a key scene involving Beowulf’s departure and compares the intensity of the unspoken love Hroðgar has for Beowulf to the love Sam has for Frodo at the Grey Havens. Ultimately, the essay argues for a new way of reading both departure scenes.


Who Is Tom Bombadil?: Interpreting The Light In Frodo Baggins And Tom Bombadil's Role In The Healing Of Traumatic Memory In J.R.R. Tolkien's _Lord Of The Rings_, Jane Beal Phd Jun 2018

Who Is Tom Bombadil?: Interpreting The Light In Frodo Baggins And Tom Bombadil's Role In The Healing Of Traumatic Memory In J.R.R. Tolkien's _Lord Of The Rings_, Jane Beal Phd

Journal of Tolkien Research

In Rivendell, after Frodo has been attacked by Ringwraiths and is healing from the removal of the splinter from a Morgul-blade that had been making its way toward his heart, Gandalf regards Frodo and contemplates a “clear light” that is visible through Frodo to “eyes to see that can.” Samwise Gamgee later sees this light in Frodo when Frodo is resting in Ithilien. The first half of this essay considers questions about this light: how does Frodo become transparent, and why, and what is the nature of the light that fills him? As recourse to Tolkien’s letters shows, the ...


Misassembled Monsters, Jenn Brown May 2018

Misassembled Monsters, Jenn Brown

Graduate School of Art Theses

This thesis is a narrative of personal and material history. Through my work in painting, sculpture, and installation, I seek to share my story of emotional armoring in an attempt to connect to an audience. In my work, I look to my personal memories of growing up in a small, midwestern town and armoring myself with emotional barriers against its social construct of “normalcy.” Inspired by Medieval suits of armor and the characteristics of Goth culture throughout history, I employ my work to present the stage of a theatrical battleground. Creating each of my pieces is a fight for the ...


Of The Silmarils And The Ring: J. R. R. Tolkien's Fiction And The Importance Of Creation And Art, Michael Hartinger May 2018

Of The Silmarils And The Ring: J. R. R. Tolkien's Fiction And The Importance Of Creation And Art, Michael Hartinger

Senior Honors Projects, 2010-current

J. R. R. Tolkien embodies the opposing ideals of Enchantment and the Machine in the Silmarils and the One Ring respectively. These created objects oppose each other just as Tolkien’s ideals of art do. Enchantment is art’s ideal, it's purpose is to glorify and enrich the beauty of reality through subcreation. The Silmarils exhibit the delight of making and perceiving beauty. Whereas the Machine is art’s shadowy reflection that utilizes apparatuses or devices rather than personal talent in order to coerce others and reality itself. Overall Tolkien's aesthetic theories reflect many fears surrounding modern attitudes ...


Can The Holy Grail Teach Us About Holiness?, Karen Knudson Apr 2018

Can The Holy Grail Teach Us About Holiness?, Karen Knudson

Scholar Week 2016 - present

In Malory's Tale of the Sankgreal, Galahad is presented as a knight who, as part of a magus tradition, is unique to history, with singular, supernatural traits as he completes the quest for the Holy Grail, but who, as part of another tradition, is also presented as a pilgrim in whose footsteps the earnest, Christian knight can follow and learn. Through the narrative of medieval romance, the pilgrim Galahad illuminates the path from practical wisdom, through disengagement with worldly realities, to ultimate union with Christ.


Winter's Bane: Part One, Jessica Molz Apr 2018

Winter's Bane: Part One, Jessica Molz

Undergraduate Honors Theses

A thesis in Creative Writing, presenting an original work of fantasy fiction drawing from Anglo-Saxon and Old Norse history, literature, culture, and mythology, with themes of heroism, sacrifice, and prejudice focusing on strong woman characters and feminist restructuring of historical tropes.


Intersex And The Pardoner’S Body, Kim Zarins Jan 2018

Intersex And The Pardoner’S Body, Kim Zarins

Accessus

Most scholars today have retreated from reading into the Pardoner's body in favor of more figurative readings that emphasize his lack of masculinity, and such lack is then linked to his dejection and despair. Other, more affirming readings center the Pardoner's performance, which allows him to model any sort of body desired through figuration. While such positions dominate and older theories like Beryl Rowland's proposal of an intersex Pardoner are dismissed, in fact, an intersex reading might be a more life-affirming interpretation, not only in terms of reframing the Pardoner's body as manifesting variation as opposed ...


"A Meruelous Thinge!": Elizabeth Of Spalbeek, Christina The Astonishing, And Performative Self-Abjection In Oxford, Bodleian Library, Ms Douce 114, Murrielle Michaud Jan 2018

"A Meruelous Thinge!": Elizabeth Of Spalbeek, Christina The Astonishing, And Performative Self-Abjection In Oxford, Bodleian Library, Ms Douce 114, Murrielle Michaud

Theses and Dissertations (Comprehensive)

Contributing to the spirited discussion regarding feminist and pro-feminine readings of Middle English hagiography, this dissertation challenges the tradition of grouping accounts of medieval holy women into a single genre that relies on stereotypes of meekness and obedience. I argue that fifteenth-century England saw a pro-feminine literary movement extolling the virtues of women who engaged in what I term “performative self-abjection,” a form of vicious self-renunciation and grotesque asceticism based on Julia Kristeva's model of the abject. The corollary of women's performative self-abjection is ex-gratia spiritual authority, public recognition, and independence, emphasized in the English corpus of fifteenth-century ...


Sacred And Profane Loves: The Renaissance Influence In C.S. Lewis' Till We Have Faces, Kevin Corr Jan 2018

Sacred And Profane Loves: The Renaissance Influence In C.S. Lewis' Till We Have Faces, Kevin Corr

Electronic Theses and Dissertations

C.S. Lewis’ last novel, Till We Have Faces: A Myth Retold, has often been regarded as his greatest work, but just as often as his most enigmatic work. The purpose of this thesis is to unveil much of the novel’s mystery by considering the impact Renaissance literature had in shaping the novel, most notably Edmund Spenser’s Faerie Queene. Although it is well-known that Lewis was Professor of Medieval and Renaissance Literature at Cambridge, current scholarship on Lewis has overlooked the Renaissance influence in the author’s work, which particularly plays a vital role in Till We Have ...


Gavin Douglas's Aeneados: Caxton's English And 'Our Scottis Langage', Jacquelyn Hendricks Dec 2017

Gavin Douglas's Aeneados: Caxton's English And 'Our Scottis Langage', Jacquelyn Hendricks

Studies in Scottish Literature

Discusses the Scots poet Gavin Douglas's translation of Virgil's Aeneid into Scots, and Douglas's treatment of his predecessor William Caxton's translation of Virgil into English, arguing that Douglas associates Caxton's English with a barbaric world of monsters and beasts, in contrast to Scots which is seen as expressing civilized classical values, and that Douglas's translation, by enhancing and showcasing the literary power of Scots for a wider audience, successfully resisted for at least forty years the linguistic standardization initiated by the burgeoning print industry.


"Thou Art The Lorliest Lede That Ever I On Looked": Arthur And Kingship As Represented By The Alliterative Morte Arthure, Sir Gawain And The Green Knight, And The Awntyrs Off Arthur, Samuel Hardin Cox Dec 2017

"Thou Art The Lorliest Lede That Ever I On Looked": Arthur And Kingship As Represented By The Alliterative Morte Arthure, Sir Gawain And The Green Knight, And The Awntyrs Off Arthur, Samuel Hardin Cox

Masters Theses

King Arthur is one of the most well known mythical figures in the English language, and throughout his 1500-year literary tradition, poets have built an intricate and multifaceted mythos around this legendary character. Integral to Arthur’s various depictions is how each poet chooses to illustrate his kingship. These characteristics often overlap across poems, poets, and time periods. Yet, upon closer examination, subtle differences between those kingly depictions produce telling insights into the period in which the story was written. For this study, I have examined three separate Arthurian romances: The Alliterative Morte Arthure, Sir Gawain and the Green Knight ...


Joseph Holland And The Idea Of The Chaucerian Book, Megan L. Cook Oct 2017

Joseph Holland And The Idea Of The Chaucerian Book, Megan L. Cook

Manuscript Studies

The antiquarian Joseph Holland (d. 1605) owned a large, but damaged, Chaucerian manuscript from the early fifteenth century (now Cambridge University Library Gg.4.27). Holland recognized in the manuscript an effort to construct a collection based on Chaucerian authorship, and he repaired and added to it using a copy of the 1598 printed edition of Chaucer's collected Works. From this edition, he took not only the text of Chaucer's poems, but paratextual materials as well, including a glossary, biographical information, and a frontispiece. His activities reveal how a distinctly post-medieval understanding of what the collected works of ...


Bodies Of Resistance: On (Not) Naming Gender In The Medieval West, Alexander V. Baldassano Sep 2017

Bodies Of Resistance: On (Not) Naming Gender In The Medieval West, Alexander V. Baldassano

All Dissertations, Theses, and Capstone Projects

This dissertation considers the genres of historiography, romance, hagiography, Chaucerian poetry, and court transcripts. While there are no extant manuscripts depicting transgender-like people’s accounts of themselves, literature of the Middle Ages is replete with fictionalized depictions of ambiguously or transgressively gendered individuals who are meant to symbolize or represent something other than themselves. By investigating how a variety of genres depicts sensationalized and transgressively gendered embodiments, I examine the presentation of transgender-like subjectivity as a manipulation of rhetoric. Viviane Namaste critiques theory such as Marjorie Garber’s Vested Interests, claiming that it reduces the transvestite figure to a rhetorical ...


Riders, Chivalry, And Knighthood In Tolkien, Thomas Honegger Aug 2017

Riders, Chivalry, And Knighthood In Tolkien, Thomas Honegger

Journal of Tolkien Research

Abstract

This essay is a much extended version of the paper I gave at the IMC Leeds on 5 July 2017. It examines Tolkien’s complex attitude towards the concept(s) of chivalry and knighthood. A close reading analysis of relevant key passages from The Lord of the Rings is combined with an examination of his statements on chivalry in his scholarly works. Tolkien’s views are then related to the scholarly discourse on the key elements of chivalry, which allows the reader to gain a deeper understanding of why Tolkien depicts the representatives of chivalry/knighthood in The Lord ...