IMC 2003: Sessions

Session 218: Reading Power in Late Medieval Literatures: Contested Discourses of Piety, Instruction and Romance

Monday 14 July 2003, 14.15-15.45

Organiser:Elisabeth Salter, Canterbury Centre for Medieval & Tudor Studies, University of Kent
Moderator/Chair:Andrew F. Butcher, Aberystwyth University
Paper 218-aPopular Poetry and Political Discourse in mid-15th-century England
(Language: English)
Helen E. Wicker, Centre for Medieval & Early Modern Studies (MEMS), University of Kent
Paper 218-bEmare's Fabulous Robe: The Ambiguities of Power in a Late Medieval Romance
(Language: English)
Christine Li-Ju Tsai, Centre for Medieval & Early Modern Studies (MEMS), University of Kent
Index terms: Language and Literature - Comparative, Language and Literature - Middle English, Literacy and Orality, Mentalities
Paper 218-cPower, Morality, Authority: 15th Century Experiences of Reading Moral Fiction
(Language: English)
Elisabeth Salter, Canterbury Centre for Medieval & Tudor Studies, University of Kent
Index terms: Education, Language and Literature - Middle English, Manuscripts and Palaeography, Mentalities
Abstract

This interdisciplinary session about medieval reading practices focuses on the roles of medieval readers in the production and interpretation of specific discourses of power. The first paper examines religious literature owned and circulated by networks of clergy, exploring the controlling or liberalising affect of these men on lay parishoners’ access to devotional literatures. The second analyses the political contexts of production and reception for the medieval romance ‘Emare’, focussing on the problematisation of power in this text. The third examines the reader’s potential to make moralised interpretations of fiction, by comparing different versions and manuscripts of ‘Gesta Romanorum’.

For further information and preliminary discussion go to http://www.ukc.ac.uk/mts/leeds