Genre “ The keynote of Chaucer’s works is their sheer variety” – Rob Pope Pope, Rob.  How to Study Chaucer.   St. Martins ...
Court Romance <ul><li>Explores refined notions of love and war in a court (palace, knights, ladies, etc.) setting. </li></...
Court Romance <ul><li>Upper Class Pursuits </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Male: hunting, feasting, tournaments and war </li></ul></...
Fabliau <ul><li>Story deals with an extended joke or trick. </li></ul><ul><li>Usually set among the lower classes </li></u...
Sermon <ul><li>Built from one of four types of material </li></ul><ul><ul><li>An abstract theme such as gluttony, charity,...
Sermon <ul><li>A plea to embrace virtue and shun vice. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Along with songs and stories, sermons were th...
Holy Lives <ul><li>Similar to Court Romance, except that the heroes are holy people rather than knights and ladies. </li><...
Confession <ul><li>A central religious practice of Chaucer’s time, as well as a standard strategy of secular and religious...
Moral Tract <ul><li>Similar to a sermon, but designed to be read rather than delivered orally. </li></ul><ul><li>Concerned...
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Genre in Canterbury Tales

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Genre in Canterbury Tales

  1. 1. Genre “ The keynote of Chaucer’s works is their sheer variety” – Rob Pope Pope, Rob. How to Study Chaucer. St. Martins Press: New York, 2001.
  2. 2. Court Romance <ul><li>Explores refined notions of love and war in a court (palace, knights, ladies, etc.) setting. </li></ul><ul><li>Plot usually revolves around the competitions between two noble men for one noble woman. </li></ul><ul><li>Characterized by elaborate, highly idealized forms of courtship and upper-class pursuits. </li></ul>
  3. 3. Court Romance <ul><li>Upper Class Pursuits </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Male: hunting, feasting, tournaments and war </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Female: walking in gardens, reading and visiting one another </li></ul></ul>
  4. 4. Fabliau <ul><li>Story deals with an extended joke or trick. </li></ul><ul><li>Usually set among the lower classes </li></ul><ul><li>Trick usually involves a combination of “raw sex” and “knockabout violence” but in the end everyone has received a kind of justice. </li></ul><ul><li>Grotesquely concrete and physical. Almost a direct inversion of the Court Romance. </li></ul>
  5. 5. Sermon <ul><li>Built from one of four types of material </li></ul><ul><ul><li>An abstract theme such as gluttony, charity, etc. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>A Biblical story or quotation such as the story of the Good Samaritan or a text such as “faith is the substance of things hoped for” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Popular stories and proverbs, or classical stories and maxims </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>A contemporary event </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. Sermon <ul><li>A plea to embrace virtue and shun vice. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Along with songs and stories, sermons were the main way in which Christian doctrine was communicated. </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. Holy Lives <ul><li>Similar to Court Romance, except that the heroes are holy people rather than knights and ladies. </li></ul><ul><li>Characters have adventures, often involving long journeys through exotic places. </li></ul><ul><li>The driving force behind the action is the love of God and final triumph is over the devil and his supporters. </li></ul><ul><li>This usually means martyrdom for the hero. </li></ul>
  8. 8. Confession <ul><li>A central religious practice of Chaucer’s time, as well as a standard strategy of secular and religious writing. </li></ul><ul><li>The author (character) looks back over their lives and confess openly to past loves, the tricks of their trade and sin in general. </li></ul>
  9. 9. Moral Tract <ul><li>Similar to a sermon, but designed to be read rather than delivered orally. </li></ul><ul><li>Concerned with virtues and vice, trials and tribulations, heaven and hell, etc. </li></ul><ul><li>Utilize analytical discussion rather than anecdotal evidence. </li></ul><ul><li>References authorities on a subject – almost like an annotated bibliography. </li></ul>

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