Today was Middle English, which was the subject of one of my first blog entries. As you might recall, I am not overly enamoured by the topic – but with a great deal of revision, I felt quite prepared for it. And I think it went quite well – questions below, as before, though I’m afraid Dell Laptops don’t run to have a ‘thorn’ key. I’ve used a capital P instead, in the title to today’s blog, and, for the fortunate uninitiated, read it as ‘th’. Make sense now? Thought not.
Before I gallop on with the questions, thought I’d give you a Carnation Update, since I know that’s where all your attention is really directed. Well, I was putting my jacket back on, at the end of the exam, and discovered I had a stalk pinned to my lapel. (As Our Vicar’s Wife said over the ‘phone, just be thankful it wasn’t a heron. Ho-ho.) The head of the carnation was lying on the floor – a bit like the beheading of the Green Knight, if you will. Sad.
Ok, stop begging me – the questions are here. Do feel free to send essays to me… I somehow feel you won’t.
-Is the romance better at articulating social anxieties than it is at imagining solutions for them?
Yes, say I. I talked about Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, and the competing moral codes of shame/honour and guilt/innocence.
-‘[T]he pleasures of fiction exceed the disciplinary control over its meaning, carving out spaces of resistance to the trascendent values of Christian morality’ (R. James Goldstein). Discuss in relation to fables AND/OR any other writing in this period.
I went for the ‘any other writing’ option, and wrote on Gower’s Confessio Amantis.
-What resources does the dream vision offer to any writer or writers from this period?
How irritatingly vague. I wrote on Chaucer’s The Book of the Duchess and Parliament of Fowls. As did, I imagine, most of those in the exam hall. I threw in a bit of Lydgate for variation. Lucky examiner.
Tomorrow… 1740-1832. Or, as I like to call it, opportunity to legitimately write about Jane Austen.