I am giving Canterbury Tales a try for the first time in my life… - Melodramatic, corsetted mistress of the obscure
I am giving Canterbury Tales a try for the first time in my life (never had to for school, which I find surprising for some reason. But, by golly, I had to 'do' The Great Gatsby three frickin' times.)
Anyway. I am finding it slow going, as I have to pay rather strict attention to be sure I understand what's going on. One problem I am found while reading the introduction to the characters was this: Should I take what is written at face value? Read between the lines? Or understand the author meant the opposite of what was written? My back brain is telling me something isn't quite what it seems, but I can't decide if that really true, or if I am just not familiar with the turns of phrase and imagery.
Anyone know? Should I just break down and get the Cliff notes (for precisely what they were ostensibly written for, even.)?
A bit of snark: the author says he will elucidate what the characters wear, but really did the literary equivalant of a vague swipe with a dusting cloth. ;)
I read it last year. Some of the tales flow better than others --and a couple are downright rude. :-)
|Date:||July 18th, 2007 11:00 pm (UTC)|| |
I am looking forward to the rude ones. ;D
Re: the clothing? He's a guy. That's as good as it generally gets, with guys.
I loved the Canterbury Tales. They are all over the map about whether you're supposed to take them seriously or not, but I liked the "take me seriously" ones least.
|Date:||July 18th, 2007 11:02 pm (UTC)|| |
Re: Clothing - true! Hee.
I guess I will just have to keep taking things at face value until force to do otherwise. ;)
Any time anyone fools anyone else into kissing someone's ass? It's a safe bet that it's not meant to be taken seriously.
That's something I haven't read in a long time. I did like it, but this post really made me want to read Hyperion again. If I only had the time.
|Date:||July 19th, 2007 03:54 am (UTC)|| |
I studied it and its one of my fav books..
I can recite the first few lines of it by heart in chaucer. Remind me to do so when next we are face to face.
if you need any insite to it, im here.
There's no single answer. Chaucer is a trickster, and the characters are frequently charicatures. But there's no Answer. Follow your instincts. You don't have to get anything specific out of them. Some humor, some lessons, and maybe some understanding of how one poet viewed his society. If you think Chaucer is making fun of the Wyfe of Bath, he probably is. (I mean, who wouldn't?) Enjoy!
|Date:||July 19th, 2007 02:43 pm (UTC)|| |
Hee! We had to go read them in high school. I went to the public library and checked out the unabridged edition, so I could read the tales they weren't letting us see.
The Miller's Tale was my favorite of the bunch, heh.
I read a few in high school and the teacher was all about getting it right. Chaucer, in her opinion, was thumbing his nose and being all sorts of cheeky about a lot of the characters. Somewhere in between the lines, you find that two or three of the characters are really pious, but you have to puzzle it out. One thing that stood out in my mind after all these years, was the widow? who wore the red stockings, which showed that she wasn't really a great and noble person as she tried to be. or something. now I wanna read it too....