Chaucer in context

Society, allegory and gender

By S. H. Rigby

Chaucer in context

Book Information

  • Format: Paperback
  • ISBN: 978-0-7190-4236-2
  • Pages: 224
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press
  • Price: £17.99
  • Published Date: January 1997
  • BIC Category: Humanities / Medieval history, Literature & literary studies / Literary studies: classical, early & medieval, LITERARY CRITICISM / General, LITERARY CRITICISM / Medieval, CE period up to c 1500, History & Archaeology, Literature: history & criticism, History, Medieval History
  • Series: Manchester Medieval Studies


Amongst the most written about works of English literature, Chaucer's Canterbury Tales still defy categorization, claims the author of this book. Was Chaucer a poet of profound religious piety or a sceptic who questioned all religious and moral certainties? Do his pilgrims reflect the society of the day, or were they a product of an already well-established literary tradition and convention? Surveying and assessing competing critical approaches to Chaucer's work, this text emphasizes a need to see Chaucer in historical context; the context of the social and political concerns of his own day.


Preface**1. Chaucer: real-life observation versus literary convention.**2. Monologic versus Dialogic Chaucer.**3. Allegorical versus humanist Chaucer**4. Misogynist versus feminist Chaucer**5. Conclusion - Chaucer: validity in interpretation.


S.H. Rigby is Senior Lecturer in History at the University of Manchester

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