Conscience and the Composition of Piers Plowman

26 Studies of the personifications in Piers Plowman have, implicitly, followed Frank's lead by proposing ever more ... (1994; 131–3). 27 For notable exceptions see Griffiths ( 1985 ), esp. p. 59, and, more recently, Scanlon ( 2007 ).

Conscience and the Composition of Piers Plowman

Conscience and the Composition of Piers Plowman provides a detailed account of one of the central personified figures in William Langland's Piers Plowman. Previous critical accounts of Conscience either focus on discussions of the faculty conscience in scholastic discourse, or eschew personification allegory as a useful category in order to argue for the figure's development or education as a character during the poem. But Conscience only appears to develop as he is re-presented, in the course of Piers Plowman, within a series of different literary modes. And he changes not only during the composition of the various episodes in different modes that make up the single version, but also during the composition of the poem as a series of three different versions. The versions of Piers Plowman form, this book argues, a single continuous narrative or argument, in which revisions to Conscience's role in one version are predicated upon his cumulative 'experiences' in the earlier versions. Drawing on a variety of materials in both Middle English and Latin, Sarah Wood illustrates the wide range of contemporary discourses Langland employed as he composed Conscience in the three versions of the poem. By showing how Langland transformed Conscience as he composed the A, B and C texts, Conscience and the Composition of Piers Plowman offers a new approach to reading the serial versions of the poem. While the versions of Piers Plowman have customarily been presented and read in parallel-text formats, Wood shows that Langland's revisions are newly comprehensible if the three versions are read in sequence.

More Books:

A Companion to Piers Plowman
Language: en
Pages: 286
Authors: John A. Alford
Categories: History
Type: BOOK - Published: 1988 - Publisher: Univ of California Press

"Absolutely essential reading for anyone interested in a serious consideration of Piers Plowman and also for anyone planning critical or scholarly investigation on it—in other words, for all students of the poem, all readers of the poem, and all scholars of the poem."—Robert Worth Frank, Jr.
'Piers Plowman' and the Medieval Discourse of Desire
Language: en
Pages: 314
Authors: Nicolette Zeeman
Categories: Literary Criticism
Type: BOOK - Published: 2006-04-20 - Publisher: Cambridge University Press

This ambitious study links William Langland's great poem Piers Plowman to wider medieval enquiries into the nature of intellectual and spiritual desire. Zeeman's radical approach opens up a completely fresh reading of Piers Plowman and sheds light on the history of medieval psychology.
Piers Plowman
Language: en
Pages: 374
Authors: S.S. Hussey
Categories: Literary Criticism
Type: BOOK - Published: 2019-07-12 - Publisher: Routledge

Originally published in 1969 Piers Plowman is a collection of 12 original essays by leading academics on Piers Plowman. As a combined volume, this collection forms a substantial introduction and a comprehensive account of the poem, its background and textual problems. The book’s essays reflect the diversity, and vigour of
The Poetics of Personification
Language: en
Pages: 210
Authors: James J. Paxson
Categories: Literary Criticism
Type: BOOK - Published: 1994-02-25 - Publisher: Cambridge University Press

An appraisal of literary personification in the light of developments in poststructuralist thought.
William Langland's Piers Plowman
Language: en
Pages: 225
Authors: Kathleen M. Hewett-Smith
Categories: Literary Criticism
Type: BOOK - Published: 2013-09-13 - Publisher: Routledge

First Published in 2001. Routledge is an imprint of Taylor & Francis, an informa company.