Academic journal article Medium Aevum

Chaucer at Work: The Making of 'The Canterbury Tales'

Academic journal article Medium Aevum

Chaucer at Work: The Making of 'The Canterbury Tales'

Article excerpt

Peter Brown, Chaucer at Work: The Making of `The Canterbury Tales' (London and New York: Longman, 1994). xii + 186 pp.; 8 plates. ISBN 0-582-23719-x, L28.00 (hard covers); ISBN 0-582-01319-4, L10.99 (p/b). Peter Brown's aim is to convey the multifarious ways in which Chaucer produces new texts out of the sources he translates, the reading he remembers and other cultural contexts such as the visual arts. Brown's purpose is less to develop an original theory than to make modern scholarship accessible to students. He shows himself to be an excellent teacher of Chaucer, but it seems that he has tried to fuse two types of book: a critical monograph, in which his view of Chaucer's creative process could have been set out with greater novelty, and a teacher's or autodidact's handbook. …

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