Captive Imaginations: Writing Prison in the Middle Ages

1813P [CRN: 25213]

Many great works of the Middle Ages were written in prison or about the experience of imprisonment. Reading some of these masterpieces, we will discover why the medieval prison was such a fruitful space for poetic creation, and how the perspective of incarcerated writers helped to shape a diversity of literary traditions. Topics will include fortune and free will, sexual and cultural difference, and the construction of the individual. We will also explore the nature of medieval systems of captivity, which differed greatly from those of modern society. Selected authors: Boethius, Mas'ud Sa'd Salman, Juan Ruiz, Chaucer, François Villon.
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