Reason and Imagination in Chaucer, the Perle-poet, and the Cloud-author: Seeing from the Center (The New Middle Ages)
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This collection makes the compelling argument that Chaucer, the Perle -poet, and The Cloud of Unknowing author, exploited analogue and metaphor for marking out the pedagogical gap between science and the imagination. Here, respected contributors add definition to arguments that have our attention and energies in the twenty-first century.
us would have liked him as he sat dumb as any stone to read books or to write them until late at night, so that he was hard to wake betimes. Nevertheless, he showed a deep uneasiness about the truth of what he read in books and an even deeper skepticism about uses for his own books. What vital space is Chaucer anticipating for books? In the case of The Nun’s Priest’s Tale, Chaucer chooses a simple, long-standing, popular tale to make a new point about books and storytelling, to practice a new
The Dimensionless Space of the Seeking Spirit 135 Epilogue 151 Notes 155 Bibliography 171 Index 179 9780230_105102_01_prexvi.indd xi 6/22/2011 4:23:11 PM 9780230_105102_01_prexvi.indd xii 6/22/2011 4:23:11 PM PREFACE J ohn Burrow’s argument that “there are many things in medieval texts which do not call on historical explanation” ref lects a growing uneasiness with reading Middle English writings largely as archives without the balance of reading them as the products of willing
painful—exchange between Jonah and his god. God chooses Jonah for a job the young prophet does not want. Already, Jonah seems to be one of us—the child who did not want to clean up her room, do her homework, write a thank-you note, and the adult who rather likes to do the right thing in a timely manner but vaguely refuses to act. In fact, God and Jonah are quite honest with each other and speak in conversational tones that remind us of St. Augustine’s dilemma in Book 10 of The Confessions: And
fiction” by citing, in an essay on “Concealment and Exposure” (1998), a passage from The Golden Bowl, where Maggie knows of her husband’s deception, and her husband sees that she knows. Nagel uses this Jamesian stand- off to demonstrate the view that takes in the subjective and the objective at once: “What we can tolerate having out in the open between us depends on what we think we can handle jointly without crippling our relations for other purposes” (15). “Concealment and Exposure” in
Lille, 27, 46, 68, 82–83, 137 Albert of Saxony, 12, 15, 18, 30–31, 60, 141 Andrew, Malcolm, 95–96 angelus novus, 32 Aquinas, Thomas, 103–4, 106 Aristotle Augustine and, 2, 4, 19, 157 Book of the Duchess and, 87–88 Bradwardine and, 24 Christianity and, 27–28 Cloud of Unknowing and, 139, 142 House of Fame and, 57–58, 60, 63 intellect and, 8–9 Patience and, 118–19, 123–25, 128 Perle and, 103, 105–7, 111 science and, 2, 22, 24–25, 155, 159 Wisdom and, 12, 18, 31–32 Armstrong, A.H., 4 “art of