Gower Bibliography

Teaching Gower Aloud

Coleman, Joyce. "Teaching Gower Aloud." In Approaches to Teaching the Poetry of John Gower. Ed. Yeager, R. F., and Gastle, Brian W. New York: Modern Language Association of America, 2011, pp. 67-76. ISBN 9781603290999

Review

Coleman suggests that Gower's best hope for the "Confessio Amantis" was that it be left "to the worldes eere / In tyme comende after this." Recognizing that many important issues in the poem can be handled only by close textual reading, she argues that on occasion the best way to open a medieval text is through performance. After briefly discussing the theory and practice of medieval public reading, Coleman introduces several classroom performance exercises that she has found successful. In suggesting readings such as the performance of speeches by Genius and Amans in the confessional dialogue, or of a tale, or (for graduate students) of linked English text and marginal Latin gloss, Coleman constructs a series a questions for the performers and for the audience, asking what the passages, specifically as performed, contribute to the experience of the poem. She tailors her questions to each of these scenarios and finally explores the possibilities for a larger performance-based final project, which may include filming. [Kurt Olsson. Copyright. The John Gower Society. JGN 31.1]

Item Type:Book Section
Subjects:Confessio Amantis

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