Section 1: Tuesday and Thursday 3:30-4:45 PM
Topic: Errant Knights & Daring Damsels
Professor: Vanessa Rapatz
Quests, queens, dragons, sorcerers, and Saracens! The world of Medieval Romance is a far cry from what we now think of as the romance genre. While the heroes of Medieval or Chivalric Romance might strive to “get the girl,” they are more action adventure and fantasy than heart-warming Rom-Com. This course will centrally focus on the Medieval Romance tradition and Arthurian Legend as we interrogate gendered modes of chivalry and sovereignty. To this end, we will read works by authors including Marie de France, Geoffrey Chaucer, and Sir Thomas Malory. However, we will balance and broaden our perspective on medieval literature by reading romances in conjunction with texts including the mystic writings of Julian of Norwich and the spiritual accounts of Margery of Kempe; such writings subvert female norms of religious and domestic authority in ways that will complicate our thinking about the traditions we associate with Medieval British Literature.