English 150

Senior Seminar: Chaucer and the Traditions of Amatory Verse

Section Semester Instructor Time Location Course Areas
11 Spring 2005 Middleton, Anne
Middleton, Anne
TTh 2-3:30 305 Wheeler

Other Readings and Media

"Benson, Larry, et al., eds.: The Riverside Chaucer

Strongly recommended for purchase; also viewable (but not printable or downloadable) online: Gower, John. Confessio Amantis

Recommended: Evans, Ruth, et al.: The Idea of the Vernacular: An Anthology of Middle English Literary Theory, 1280-1520 "


This seminar will examine Chaucer's varied use of traditions of verse about love and lovers, and the sentiments and values attached to amatory experience in relation to other discursive and ideational registers of fictive and philosophical writing, since (contrary to common belief) this topic/theme has very little attention in Middle English before the last two decades of the 14C. Our reading will be in Middle English (and presupposes some minimal exposure to the language, if only in English 45A), and will range well beyond the Canterbury Tales, to writings of some of his contemporaries and successors. The chief written work of the course is a paper of ~15 20 pages, to be developed in stages through the semester, including bibliography, language analysis, summary of critical arguments, etc; there is no final exam, and the paper is due on the first day of the final exam period.

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