IMC 2013: Sessions

Session 227: Money, Economy, and Exchange in Middle English Literature

Monday 1 July 2013, 14.15-15.45

Organiser:Anne McTaggart, Department of English, University of Western Ontario
Moderator/Chair:Andrew Galloway, Department of English, Cornell University
Paper 227-aBargain Hunting: Conflicting Economies in Early Robin Hood Tales
(Language: English)
Stephen R. Reimer, Department of English & Film Studies, University of Alberta, Edmonton
Index terms: Economics - General, Folk Studies, Language and Literature - Middle English
Paper 227-bMonetary and Sexual Economies as Female Agency in Piers Plowman
(Language: English)
Renée Michelle Ward, Department of English & Film Studies, Wilfrid Laurier University, Ontario
Index terms: Economics - Trade, Language and Literature - Middle English, Women's Studies
Paper 227-cDebtors and Creditors in the Ricardian Poets
(Language: English)
Anne McTaggart, Department of English, University of Western Ontario
Index terms: Economics - General, Language and Literature - Middle English, Social History
Abstract

The late medieval period in England was, like our own, a time of radical economic change and crisis; it was also a time in which many English writers responded to the process of monetization with urgent calls for social justice. As we in the 21st century seem poised on the brink, either of long-term economic decline or an economic paradigm shift – no one seems quite sure – what can we learn from late medieval responses to and critiques of the money economy? The papers in this session consider the economic tensions that shaped life and literature in 14th- and 15th-century England by exploring competing economic models, questions about gender and economic agency, and the problem of debt.