Chaucerian Parrhesia: World-building and truth-telling in The Canterbury Tales and 'Lak of Stedfastnesse'

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

    Abstract

    This essay examines the role of parrhesia (i.e., free, frank, or fearless speech) in three Canterbury Tales - The Second Nun's Tale, The Tale of Melibee, and The Manciple's Tale - in which Chaucer explores how the desire to play the parrhesiastes and anxieties about parrhesia's dangerousness can serve as catalysts in the production of literary worlds. By way of conclusion, it argues that Chaucer's short poem 'Lak of Stedfastnesse' might archive a quasi-parrhesiastic utterance directed at the despotic King Richard II, and that a modern conception of Chaucer as a non-polemical ironist has prevented many critics from reading it as such.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)30-43
    Number of pages14
    JournalPostmedieval
    Volume9
    Issue number1
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2018

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    critic
    anxiety
    Geoffrey Chaucer
    Truth-telling
    Canterbury Tales
    Parrhesia
    Ironist
    Nuns
    Richard II
    Conception
    Utterance
    Poem
    Anxiety

    Cite this

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    abstract = "This essay examines the role of parrhesia (i.e., free, frank, or fearless speech) in three Canterbury Tales - The Second Nun's Tale, The Tale of Melibee, and The Manciple's Tale - in which Chaucer explores how the desire to play the parrhesiastes and anxieties about parrhesia's dangerousness can serve as catalysts in the production of literary worlds. By way of conclusion, it argues that Chaucer's short poem 'Lak of Stedfastnesse' might archive a quasi-parrhesiastic utterance directed at the despotic King Richard II, and that a modern conception of Chaucer as a non-polemical ironist has prevented many critics from reading it as such.",
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    Chaucerian Parrhesia : World-building and truth-telling in The Canterbury Tales and 'Lak of Stedfastnesse'. / Megna, Paul.

    In: Postmedieval, Vol. 9, No. 1, 01.03.2018, p. 30-43.

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

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