Piers Plowman and the Medieval Discourse of Desire by Nicolette ZeemanPiers Plowman and the Medieval Discourse of Desire by Nicolette Zeeman

Piers Plowman and the Medieval Discourse of Desire

byNicolette Zeeman

Paperback | November 12, 2009

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This ambitious work links William Langland's great poem Piers Plowman to wider medieval enquiries into the nature of intellectual and spiritual desire. Nicolette Zeeman traces the history of psychology and its iconography in medieval devotional and theological literature, stretching back to St Augustine and Gregory the Great, and shows how an understanding of these traditions opens up a fresh reading of Piers Plowman. She challenges the consensus according to which the poem narrates an essentially positive 'education' of the will, and reveals instead a narrative of desire emerging from rebuke, loss and denial. This radical reading revolutionises our thinking about Piers Plowman, and sheds light on the history of medieval psychology, devotion, pastoral care, medieval textual theory and literary history.
Title:Piers Plowman and the Medieval Discourse of DesireFormat:PaperbackDimensions:328 pages, 9.02 × 5.98 × 0.75 inPublished:November 12, 2009Publisher:Cambridge University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0521122988

ISBN - 13:9780521122986

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Table of Contents

Introduction: trial by desire; 1. 'Painful lettings': sin, temptation and tribulation; 2. Powers of knowledge and desire; 3. Studying the word; 4. The word heard and written; 5. Seeing and suffering in nature; 6. Clergie and kynde in Piers Plowman; 7. Imaginatyf and the feast of Pacience; 8. A poem shaped by knowing and wanting.

Editorial Reviews

"Offers one of the most stimulating contributions in years to Piers as philosophical poetry." -- Choice