Prospectus

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Philology 1: Introduction to Middle English Language and Literature

Course 2016-2017

Admission requirements

None.

Description

After the Norman Conquest of 1066 the English language and English literature came fully into their own in the works of Geoffrey Chaucer and some of his contemporaries in the later fourteenth century. This course will concentrate on Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales: we will read some of the Tales and “translate” parts of them in the seminars, for which elementary Middle English grammar will be studied. In order to understand these remote texts properly, the lectures will deal with aspects of the cultural history of the Middle Ages: social structure, church and clergy, ideas about nature, love, sex, marriage, dress and food, life and death, and especially the tension between ideal and reality.

Course objectives

Students will acquire
1. Skills in reading and translating fourteenth-century English
2. A working knowledge of elementary Middle English grammar
3. Insight in the cultural history of the Middle Ages.

Timetable

The timetable is available on the BA English website

Mode of instruction

One hour lecture and one hour seminar per week.

Course Load

The course load of this course is 140 hours.

  • hours spent on attending lectures and seminars: 26
  • time for studying the compulsory literature: 74
  • time to prepare for the exam: 36
  • Tutoring/opportunity to inspect exams: 4 hours.

Assessment method

Written midterm examination (30%); written final examination (70%), both of them consisting of translations and open questions.

If the final grade is 5 or less students may take the resit once and the mark of the resit will constitute 100% of the final grade.

Attendance is compulsory. Unauthorized absence will mean that you cannot take part in the relevant exam(s).

Blackboard

Blackboard will be used to provide students with an overview of current affairs, as well as specific information about (components of) the course, such as the weekly syllabus (from week 1, in the ‘Course Documents’) and assignments.

Reading list

  • Benson, Larry D. ed. (2008). The Riverside Chaucer, Oxford University Press paperback.
  • Horobin, Simon (2013). Chaucer’s Language, Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Reader with background material, order via Reader Online.

Registration

Registration via coordinator of studies.

Registration Studeren à la carte and Contractonderwijs

Registration Studeren à la carte
Registration Contractonderwijs

Contact

Student administration Van Eyckhof

Remarks

Students are expected to prepare for the first class. Information about reading and assignments for week 1 is available both on Blackboard (enrollment is required) and in the Reader. From week 2 onwards the weekly syllabus will only be available on Blackboard.