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University Honors Program

ENGL 698-Capstone: Performing the Middle Ages

Section A: TU 11:30-12:45—Wendy Matlock

Permission obtained from English Department, ECS 108, beginning Monday, 21 October 2013. The 21st century constantly performs the Middle Ages, whether at a Medieval Times restaurant, on a gaming platform, or by calling something “medieval.” This class will ask whether the past can come alive in these performances or whether such efforts undermine our ability to see the past as distinct from the present. To help us consider this conundrum, we will sample modern performances of the medieval in works like Game of Thrones, A Knight’s Tale, Disney’s Robin Hood, and Monty Python and the Holy Grail while reading narratives from the Middle Ages that continue to appeal to modern readers. Such texts include romances by Marie de France and Chrétien de Troyes, poems by Geoffrey Chaucer, and anonymous morality plays and ballads. Requirements include active participation in class discussions, response papers, a short paper (5 pages), a longer research paper (10 pages), and a final exam. ENGL 698 fulfills three credits of the British Literature overlay req. for English majors. K-State 8 Tag: Aesthetic Interpretation.