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Medieval Performances

ENGL 221.401
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Medieval literature is a literature deeply indebted to performative practices such as inquisition, revelation, confession, sacramentality, confession, miracle, and pilgrimage. In this course, we will read twentieth-century performance and linguistic theory alongside a wide variety of medieval texts written and performed in England between about 1200 and 1500. We will be reading plays from the great fifteenth-century biblical cycles performed on Corpus Christi day; sensational miracle tales; heresy trial records; saints' lives; selections from Chaucer's *Canterbury Tales* and *Piers Plowman*. Students will be asked to compose weekly reading responses, give an oral presentation in class, and write a final research paper (or final performance). Students are welcome from disciplines other than English, especially Anthropology, Comparative Literature, Judaic Studies, History, Religious Studies, and Women's Studies, among others.