Geoffrey Chaucer

Geoffrey Chaucer

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qAs he examines the seven multitale fragments of the Canterbury Tales, Jerome Mandel reveals Chaucer's working concepts of artistic arrangement. Each chapter focuses upon the principles underlying Chaucer's construction of the fragments and shows how carefully Chaucer integrated all the parts into an artistic whole. In building the fragments, Chaucer adhered to principles of order that he invented, defined for himself, or discovered among the writers that he read.q qChaucer never finished the Canterbury Tales. Knowing which stories he had at hand and realizing which stories he had yet to write, he began the process of arranging the tales sometime between 1387 and his death in 1400. He designed the order in which he wanted some of the tales to be read, wrote prologues and links, and manipulated the structure, themes, and characters of those tales he designated for each individual fragment. The same artistic techniques of contrast, cross-referencing, and leitmotif which unify the individual tales, he used to unify the multitale fragments and to ensure the coherence of the whole project.q qEven when they do not share the same tone, point of view, narrator, or genre, the tales within each fragment belong together because they share the same themes and types of characters and, perhaps most indicative of Chaucer's ideas of order, they share the same structure. These parallels, which pervade every fragment of the Canterbury Tales, insist that certain tales, and no others, be joined to form a coherent aesthetic unit. Therefore, each fragment, regardless of its intended position in a overall scheme which Chaucer never completed, is a coherent work of art.q qBy examining the methods Chaucer used to link the tales into clearly defined and coherent fragments, Professor Mandel shows how Chaucer designed and built the tales to fit together with mutual coherence. In the process, his book enlarges our awareness of Chaucer's creative richness by uncovering all manner of previously unnoticed excellences in one of the more neglected areas of Chaucer's art in the Canterbury Tales.q qThis book is full of pleasant surprises. Not only do we discover the principles that governed Chaucer's choices but we discover that the tales Chaucer linked, especially in the two-tale fragments, are more like each other than they are like any other tale in the collection. Learned and original, the book provides exciting insights into the way Chaucer constructed the individual fragments of the Canterbury Tales and thus improves our understanding of the craft that Chaucer found qso long to lerne.qq--BOOK JACKET.Title Summary field provided by Blackwell North America, Inc. All Rights ReservedThe Wife of Bath penetrates the frame of the pilgrimage at the end of her tale when she advertises her own preference in men ... In no other fragment does the animosity among the pilgrims so threaten Harry Baillya#39;s control of the pilgrimage thatanbsp;...

Title:Geoffrey Chaucer
Author:Jerome Mandel
Publisher:Fairleigh Dickinson Univ Press - 1992-01-01


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