William Langland's Piers Plowman

William Langland's Piers Plowman : A Book of Essays

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First Published in 2001. Routledge is an imprint of Taylor & Francis, an informa company.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 225 pages
  • 152 x 229 x 23.62mm | 476g
  • CRC Press Inc
  • Bosa Roca, United States
  • English
  • black & white illustrations
  • 0815328044
  • 9780815328049

Back cover copy

William Langland's chief work, Piers Plowman, is regarded as the greatest Middle English poem prior to Chaucer's Canterbury Tales. Both a social satire and a vision of simple Christian life, it has much to contribute to contemporary debates over such issues as gender, dissent, representation, and popular religion and culture, and it has recently enjoyed renewed critical attention. This volume tackles some of the central questions within Piers Plowman studies. Its essays, ranging from source study to critical historicism and queer theory, demonstrate the variety of critical tools presently brought to bear upon medieval texts, but they also share a common interest in social context and meaning. What all of the contributors insist upon is the need for a fundamental reconfiguring of our most basic understandings of Piers Plowman -- of its author and audience; the order of its texts; the power of its poetry; its understanding of women, of the poor, of allegory, of history itself; and its relation to fourteenth-century culture and ideology.
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Table of contents

Table of Contents: Introduction, Piers Plowman in Context: Making History Lefgal: Piers Plowman and the Rebels of Fourteenth-Century England Andrew Galloway, The Luxury of Gender: Piers Plowman B.9 and The Merchant's Tale Joan Baker & Susan Signe Morrison, Langland's Romances Stephen H. A. Shepherd, The Langland Myth C. David Benson The Poetry of Piers Plowman Langland's Mighty Line Stephen A. Barney, Chaucer and Langland as Religious Writers Mary Clemente Davlin, O.P. Through the Lens of Theory: The Power of Impropriety: Authorial Naming in piers Plowman James Simpson, Measurement and the "feminine" in Piers Plowman: A Response to Recent Studies of Langland and Gender Elizabeth Robertson, Allegory Reconsidered: Inventing the Subject and the Personification of Will in Piers Plowman: Rhetorical, Erotic, and Ideological Origins and Limits in Langland's Allegorical Poetics James J. Paxson, Poverty, Allegory and the Transfiguration of History in the Central Visions of Piers Plowman Kathleen M. Hewitt-Smith, Notes on Contributors, Index
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