- Publisher: CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY PRESS
- Format: Paperback | 302 pages
- Dimensions: 152mm x 224mm x 18mm | 499g
- Publication date: 1 May 2008
- Publication City/Country: Cambridge
- ISBN 10: 0521679753
- ISBN 13: 9780521679756
- Edition: 1
- Illustrations note: 9 b/w illus.
- Sales rank: 1,628,903
Medieval French literature encompasses 450 years of literary output in Old and Middle French, mostly produced in Northern France and England. These texts, including courtly lyrics, prose and verse romances, dits amoureux and plays, proved hugely influential for other European literary traditions in the medieval period and beyond. This Companion offers a wide-ranging and stimulating guide to literature composed in medieval French from its beginnings in the ninth century until the Renaissance. The essays are grounded in detailed analysis of canonical texts and authors such as the Chanson de Roland, the Roman de la Rose, Villon's Testament, Chretien de Troyes, Machaut, Christine de Pisan and the Tristan romances. Featuring a chronology and suggestions for further reading, this is the ideal companion for students and scholars in other fields wishing to discover the riches of the French medieval tradition.
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Simon Gaunt is Professor of French at King's College London. Sarah Kay is Professor of French at Princeton University.
'One of the merits of these essays is that they can be read in any order. Each contributor presents the works or author under discussion clearly, assuming no great background knowledge on the part of the reader, a positive for a volume intended for university students. The essays succeed in introducing medieval French literature and some of the current debates in that discipline to the non-specialist. I recommend [this book] most strongly.' French Review
Table of contents
Chronology; Introduction Simon Gaunt and Sarah Kay; Part I. What Is a Medieval French Text?: 1. The Chanson de Roland Jane Gilbert; 2. The Old French Vulgate cycle Peggy McCracken; 3. Le Roman de la rose Noah D. Guynn; 4. The Testament of Francois Villon Adrian Armstrong; Part II. What Is a Medieval French Author?: 5. Chretien de Troyes Matilda Bruckner; 6. The Chatelain de Couci Simon Gaunt; 7. Guillaume de Machaut Deborah McGrady; 8. Christine de Pizan Marilynn Desmond; Part III. What Is the Value of Genre for Medieval French Literature?: 9. Narrative genres Keith Busby; 10. Lyric poetry of the later Middle Ages Jane H. M. Taylor; 11. Genre, parody and spectacle Sarah Kay; 12. Theatre and theatricality Helen Solterer; Part IV. How Can We Read Medieval French Literature Historically?: 13. Feudalism and kingship James R. Simpson; 14. Clerks and laity Emma Campbell; 15. The marital and the sexual William Burgwinkle; 16. Others and alterity Sylvia Huot; Appendix. Reference works for Old and Middle French; Bibliography of medieval French texts; Suggested further reading; Index.