THE "ALLITERATIVE MORTE ARTHURE": THE FORM OF EPIC TRAGEDY (ENGLAND).

Persistent Link:
http://hdl.handle.net/10150/186326
Title:
THE "ALLITERATIVE MORTE ARTHURE": THE FORM OF EPIC TRAGEDY (ENGLAND).
Author:
STOTTLEMYER, RONALD STEVEN.
Issue Date:
1983
Publisher:
The University of Arizona.
Rights:
Copyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
Abstract:
The most enduring problem in the criticism of the Alliterative Morte Arthure is the difficulty of describing its genre accurately. In the past most critics and literary historians have been content to label the poem variously as a romance, a chronicle, an heroic poem, an epic, or a tragedy solely on the basis of a superficial reading of its subject matter, plot, and theme. This study challenges those readings of the poem with an extensive analysis of its total artistic structure of narrative techniques, patterns of imagery and symbolism, and thematic development. The results of this analysis indicate that the Alliterative Morte Arthure is best described as an epic tragedy. The analysis of the poem's form and content is inductive in nature. After a review of the criticism dealing with the poem's genre and an exposition of the study's methodology, the analysis then proceeds with a close reading of the particular narrative structure and content of the poem's three macro-episodes. Since this study rests on the critical proposition that the analysis of a work's genre is best founded on an examination of its narrative structure, this reading focuses primarily on the description of the various narrative relationships that exists between the episodes of each macro-episode. The analysis simultaneously accounts for the thematic significance of the various patterns of imagery, symbolism, and other narrative content that emerge from this close reading. The study then concludes with a discussion of the Alliterative Morte Arthure's genre. A preliminary description of the basic features of epic and romance suggests that the poem is undeniably a species of epic narrative. The results of a close reading of the poem, however, indicate that this designation of its genre as well as the widely accepted classification of it as a medieval tragedy of fortune are both inadequate to illuminate the particularly communal nature of Arthur's tragedy. For this reason the Alliterative Morte Arthure is most appropriately described as an epic tragedy, a narrative that presents the epic hero's catastrophe in the context of his relationship with his community.
Type:
text; Dissertation-Reproduction (electronic)
Keywords:
Morte Arthure.; Arthurian romances -- History and criticism.
Degree Name:
Ph.D.
Degree Level:
doctoral
Degree Program:
English; Graduate College
Degree Grantor:
University of Arizona
Advisor:
Eisner, Sigmund

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.language.isoenen_US
dc.titleTHE "ALLITERATIVE MORTE ARTHURE": THE FORM OF EPIC TRAGEDY (ENGLAND).en_US
dc.creatorSTOTTLEMYER, RONALD STEVEN.en_US
dc.contributor.authorSTOTTLEMYER, RONALD STEVEN.en_US
dc.date.issued1983en_US
dc.publisherThe University of Arizona.en_US
dc.rightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.en_US
dc.description.abstractThe most enduring problem in the criticism of the Alliterative Morte Arthure is the difficulty of describing its genre accurately. In the past most critics and literary historians have been content to label the poem variously as a romance, a chronicle, an heroic poem, an epic, or a tragedy solely on the basis of a superficial reading of its subject matter, plot, and theme. This study challenges those readings of the poem with an extensive analysis of its total artistic structure of narrative techniques, patterns of imagery and symbolism, and thematic development. The results of this analysis indicate that the Alliterative Morte Arthure is best described as an epic tragedy. The analysis of the poem's form and content is inductive in nature. After a review of the criticism dealing with the poem's genre and an exposition of the study's methodology, the analysis then proceeds with a close reading of the particular narrative structure and content of the poem's three macro-episodes. Since this study rests on the critical proposition that the analysis of a work's genre is best founded on an examination of its narrative structure, this reading focuses primarily on the description of the various narrative relationships that exists between the episodes of each macro-episode. The analysis simultaneously accounts for the thematic significance of the various patterns of imagery, symbolism, and other narrative content that emerge from this close reading. The study then concludes with a discussion of the Alliterative Morte Arthure's genre. A preliminary description of the basic features of epic and romance suggests that the poem is undeniably a species of epic narrative. The results of a close reading of the poem, however, indicate that this designation of its genre as well as the widely accepted classification of it as a medieval tragedy of fortune are both inadequate to illuminate the particularly communal nature of Arthur's tragedy. For this reason the Alliterative Morte Arthure is most appropriately described as an epic tragedy, a narrative that presents the epic hero's catastrophe in the context of his relationship with his community.en_US
dc.typetexten_US
dc.typeDissertation-Reproduction (electronic)en_US
dc.subjectMorte Arthure.en_US
dc.subjectArthurian romances -- History and criticism.en_US
thesis.degree.namePh.D.en_US
thesis.degree.leveldoctoralen_US
thesis.degree.disciplineEnglishen_US
thesis.degree.disciplineGraduate Collegeen_US
thesis.degree.grantorUniversity of Arizonaen_US
dc.contributor.advisorEisner, Sigmunden_US
dc.identifier.proquest8315311en_US
dc.identifier.oclc688632430en_US
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