Gower Bibliography

Romance, Popular Style and the Confessio Amantis: Conflict or Evasion?

Shuffelton, George. "Romance, Popular Style and the Confessio Amantis: Conflict or Evasion?" In John Gower, Trilingual Poet: Language, Translation, and Tradition. Ed. Dutton, Elisabeth and Hines, John and Yeager, R.F. Cambridge: Brewer, 2010, pp. 74-84.


Shuffleton identifies the seemingly conflicting strains of "romance" and "exemplary" and of the "elite" and "popular" in CA, as manifested in Gower's choice of tales, in the narrative conventions reflected in his retelling, and in his choice of language; but he also notes how comfortably these co-exist within the text, and he argues that Gower, rather than exploiting the differences – particularly to the advantage of one over another – sought instead to bridge them by suppressing features that would be recognized as distinctive and by his "consistent willingness to marry high and low" (83), as he imagined himself addressing "a universal audience, undivided by taste or cultural distinctions" and as he sought "to play the role of Arion, to restore unity to a fractured polity" (84). [PN. Copyright. The John Gower Society. JGN 30.1]

Item Type:Book Section
Subjects:Confessio Amantis

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