Originally published in 1994, Oral Tradition in Middle English is an edited collection providing a multidisciplinary look at the importance and nature of oral tradition in Middle English literature. The book offers a discussion of the gradual problemization of orality and literacy in works of verbal art from this period. It shows how early typographies proved too exclusive to explain the heterogeneity of relevant texts, bringing to bear the new and potentially productive concepts of "vocality" and developing literacy. This book establishes a new interpretive paradigm for Middle English poetry.
Introduction: Oral Poetics in Post-Conquest England, Mark C. Amodio
Introduction to the Individual Contributions, Sarah Gray Miller
1. Literacy, Orality, and the Poetics of Middle English, Nancy Mason Bradbury
2. Oral Tradition in the Middle English Romance: The Case of Robert of Cisyle, Alexandra Hennesey Olsen
3. Tradition and Heroism in the Middle English Romances, Dave Henderson
4. The Devil’s Writing Lesson, John M. Ganim
5. Dorigen’s Promise and Scholars’ Premise: The Orality of the Speech Act in The Franklin’s Tale, Leslie K. Arnovick
6. Oral Tradition and the Canterbury Tales, Ward Parks
7. "Now Holde Youre Mouthe". The Romance of Orality in the Thopas-Melibee Section of the Canterbury Tales, Seth Lerer
8. Wyrchipe: The Clash of Oral-Heroic and Literate-Ricardan Ideals in the Alliterative Morte Arthure, Donna Lynne Rondolone
9. The Alliterative Morte Arthure As a Witness to Epic, Britton J. Harwood
The volumes in this set, originally published between 1938 and 1994, draw together research by leading academics in the area of medieval history and medieval literature, and provide a rigorous examination of related key issues. The volume examines medieval history from the early Middle Ages, right up until the Reformation, as well as the effect of the medieval period on later cultures, such as the Victorians. This collection draws together books on the monarchy, medieval philosophy, religion, art, music, psychology and architecture as well as volumes on medieval archeology. The collection also brings together key volumes on medieval literature of the period, with formative works examining medieval religious literature, medieval legends and oral tradition. The collection also includes titles examining specific poems from the period such as Piers Plowman, Sir Gawain and the Green Knight and The Pearl, as well as volumes on influential writers of the period such as Jean Froissant, John Lydgate and Margery Kempe. This collection brings back into print a collection of insightful and detailed books on the diverse medieval period and will be a must have resource for academics and students, not only of history and literature, but of anthropology, music, psychology and religion.