Although courtly literature is often associated with a chivalrous and idyllic life, the fifteen original essays in this collection demonstrate that the quest for love in the world of medieval courtly literature was underpinned by violence. Lovers were rejected, mistrust ruled, rape was a rampant problem, and marriage was often characterized by brutality. Albrecht Classen brings together an outstanding group of historical, cultural, and literary scholars in this volume to investigate the complicated, nuanced, and often surprising unions of love and violence in courtly medieval literature.
Albrecht Classen is Professor of German at the University of Arizona. He is editor of The Book and the Magic of Reading in the Middle Ages and Meeting the Foreign in the Middle Ages, both published by Routledge.