Gower Bibliography

Theriomorphic Shape-Shifting: An experimental reading of identity and metamorphosis in selected medieval British texts

Schutz, Andrea K.. "Theriomorphic Shape-Shifting: An experimental reading of identity and metamorphosis in selected medieval British texts." PhD thesis, University of Toronto, 1995.

Review

["Human to animal shape-shifting is one of the most universal cultural motifs, appearing in the literature, mythology and sculpture of virtually every people on earth. For all that the theme of metamorphosis denotes the possibility of voluntary fluidity, it also delineates the reality of separation and definition. . . . This thesis examines the nature and use of metamorphosis in four texts. John Gower's Confessio Amantis uses Ovidian stories as a means of discussing the nature and stability of human hierarchies. Social violations bring about physical transformations, which cause humans to lose their place in the Great Chain of Being." Other works considered are Chaucer's KnT, Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream, and the Middle Welsh Math vab Mathonwy. "In short, human-to-animal metamorphosis focuses on the limits of humans as social animals, as users of metaphor and as creative beings." [JGN 15.2]

Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Additional Information:Dissertation Abstracts International 56 (1996): 4765A
Subjects:Confessio Amantis

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