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Sciences and the Self in Medieval Poetry : Alan of Lille's Anticlaudianus and John Gower's Confessio Amantis - James Simpson

Sciences and the Self in Medieval Poetry

Alan of Lille's Anticlaudianus and John Gower's Confessio Amantis

Hardcover Published: 10th August 2011
ISBN: 9780521471817
Number Of Pages: 334

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In this study James Simpson examines two great poems of the later medieval period, the Latin philosophical epic, Alan of Lille's Anticlaudianus (1181-3), and John Gower's English poem, The Confessio Amantis (1390-3). Simpson locates these works in a cultural context dominated by two kinds of literary humanism: the absolutist, whose philosophical mentor is Plato, whose literary model is Virgil and whose concept of the self is centred in the intellect, and the constitutionalist, whose classical models are Aristotle and Ovid and whose concept of the self resides in the mediatory power of the imagination. Both poems are examples of the Bildungsroman, in which the self reaches its fullness only by traversing an educational cursus in the related sciences of ethics, politics and cosmology, but as this study shows, there are very different modes of thought behind their conceptions of selfhood and education.

Industry Reviews

'The originality of the juxtaposition is one measure of the provocativeness and occasional brilliance of Simpson's vigorous and ambitious new study, which offers radically novel readings of both poems at the same time that it draws them together in an intriguing exploration of the nature of the humanist poetics of the Middle Ages.' John Gower Newsletter

Introduction
The outer form of the Anticlaudianus
A preposterous interpretation of the Anticlaudianus
Alan's philosopher-king
Ovidian disunity in Gower's Confessio Amantis
Genius's psychological information in Book III
The primacy of politics in the Confessio Amantis
Poetics
Conclusion: varieties of humanist politics
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780521471817
ISBN-10: 0521471818
Series: Cambridge Studies in Medieval Literature
Audience: Professional
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 334
Published: 10th August 2011
Publisher: CAMBRIDGE UNIV PR
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 23.44 x 15.8  x 2.46
Weight (kg): 0.54

Earn 624 Qantas Points
on this Book