Language and the Declining World in Chaucer, Dante, and Jean de Meun by John M. FylerLanguage and the Declining World in Chaucer, Dante, and Jean de Meun by John M. Fyler

Language and the Declining World in Chaucer, Dante, and Jean de Meun

byJohn M. Fyler

Paperback | June 24, 2010

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Medieval commentaries on the origin and history of language used biblical history, from Creation to the Tower of Babel, as their starting-point, and described the progressive impairment of an originally perfect language. Biblical and classical sources raised questions for both medieval poets and commentators about the nature of language, its participation in the Fall, and its possible redemption. John M. Fyler focuses on how three major poets - Chaucer, Dante, and Jean de Meun - participated in these debates about language. He offers new analysis of how the history of language is described and debated in the Divine Comedy, the Canterbury Tales and the Roman de la Rose. While Dante follows the Augustinian idea of the Fall and subsequent redemption of language, Jean de Meun and Chaucer are skeptical about the possibilities for linguistic redemption and resign themselves, at least half-comically, to the linguistic implications of the Fall and the declining world.
Title:Language and the Declining World in Chaucer, Dante, and Jean de MeunFormat:PaperbackDimensions:322 pages, 9.02 × 5.98 × 0.71 inPublished:June 24, 2010Publisher:Cambridge University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0521147719

ISBN - 13:9780521147712

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgements; List of abbreviations; 1. The Biblical history of language; 2. Love and language in Jean de Meun; 3. Dante and Chaucer's Dante; 4. The prison-house of language; Notes; Primary sources; Bibliography; Index.

Editorial Reviews

"...immensely learned and well-written new book...Less a polemic than a meditation on language in a fallen world, Language and the Declining World teases out a host of intricate positions on the nature of language and its capabilities."
-- Tim William Machan, Marquette University, Speculum