English In The Middle Ages by Tim William MachanEnglish In The Middle Ages by Tim William Machan

English In The Middle Ages

byTim William Machan

Paperback | May 15, 2005

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"Professor Machan explores for the first time fully a new dimension in the understanding of the role of the English language in medieval England. He is rigorous and sceptical in his examination of assumptions that have come to be too easily accepted - about the rise of 'standard' English,about 'linguistic nationalism', about the role of Lollardy in fostering the vernacular, about the intrinsic funniness of regional dialects. He uses literary texts well, and offers, from his particular linguistic vantage-point, new and compelling interpretations of the dialect northernisms inChaucer's Reeve's Tale and of the subtleties of the 'sociolect' of courtly love-conversation in Sir Gawain and the Green Knight.. Derek Pearsall , Harvard UniversityWhat did people in England in the Middle Ages think about language? What was their view of English, French, and Latin, and how did this influence the way they communicated? This book uses these questions as a basis for a ground-breaking investigation into the use and status of the English languagein medieval England.Professor Machan suggests that many linguistic, literary, and historical considerations of medieval statements on language have significantly failed to take into account the social and linguistic contexts of their production. In this volume he explores not only medieval ideas about language but alsothe discursive traditions which generated them.English in the Middle Ages draws upon a wide range of documentary evidence, including most notably the royal letters issued in 1258 prior to the Barons' War. The author also analyses the language spoken by Chaucer's pilgrims, the conversations in 'Sir Gawain and the Green Knight', and many otherchronicles, poems, and commentaries. The book concludes with a consideration of the post-medieval history of the status of English in law, literature, and education.The book will interest scholars from a range of disciplines - particularly linguistics, literature, and history - and is written in clear, non-technical language.
T.W. Machan is Professor and Chair of English at Marquette University, where he teaches linguistics and medieval language and literature. He has published extensively on Middle English and Old Norse and edited texts in both languages. His books include Textual Criticism and Middle English Texts (University Press of Virginia, 1994) and...
Title:English In The Middle AgesFormat:PaperbackDimensions:224 pages, 9.21 × 6.14 × 0.51 inPublished:May 15, 2005Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199282129

ISBN - 13:9780199282128

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Table of Contents

Preface1. The Ecology of Middle English2. The Baron's War and Henry's Letters3. Language, Dialect, Nation4. What's a Dialect Before it's a Dialect?5. After Middle EnglishWorks Cited

Editorial Reviews

`Review from previous edition ... interesting and engaging ...'English Historical Review