Dr. Martin Warren Faculty Spotlight Presentation

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In the sixth installment of our Faculty Spotlight Presentation series, Dr. Martin Warren will open up his spring graduate class on Geoffrey Chaucer.

Date & Time:

Monday, February 25, 2019
6:00 PM - 7:30 PM

Registration:

Location:

O'Shaughnessy-Frey Library, Room 108

 

Chaucer's Global Compaignye

Chaucer's The Canterbury Tales had a global scope from its birth. As a text, it both reflects and constructs an entire world, a world that scholars have most often addressed through a particularly English lens. Yet Chaucer's world was rather wide. Well-traveled, Chaucer was deeply influenced by Dante and Boccaccio. He spoke several languages and was more "European" than "English" in sensibility. In the words of David Wallace, Chaucer's poetry "opens out to Europe, rather than withdraws from it." The fictional pilgrimage and storytelling contest of The Canterbury Tales reveals Chaucer's wider view of the world. His English pilgrims tell tales that have traveled from Asia, the Middle East, northern Africa and from various regions of Europe. In fact, just over half of Chaucer's tales happen beyond England. Very much the experimentalist, he played fascinating games with genre and literary form while taking a well-crafted swipe at the prevailing social order. Soon after Chaucer's death, The Canterbury Tales travelled across the English Channel back into the linguistic cultures from which Chaucer's verse first grew. Chaucer's global reach grew with Britain's colonial expansion. Over time, the Tales have entered increasingly expansive networks of translation, appropriation, and media transformation. This presentation will survey how multilingual and global audiences, these "expansive network," rewrite contemporary interpretations of literatures of the past, specifically Chaucer's work.

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