Comparative Literature | Lyric Poetry in Medieval Europe
C415 | 1136 | McGerr, R


Section meets COAS Arts & Humanities requirement
Section carries cultural studies credit
Section meets with C523

Class Meets:  TR  1:00-2:15   BH 345

In this course, we will examine the development of lyric poetry in
Europe from the sixth to fifteenth centuries.  We will study
examples of liturgical, devotional, and secular lyrics in Latin and
the vernaculars, exploring traditions and innovations in form and
content, as well as the relationship between verbal text and musical
setting.
Issues we will address include the construction of the subject in
lyric poetry, shared discourses of desire in religious and secular
lyrics, the role of intertextual and intratextual dialogue in lyric
poems (including the embedding of lyric poems in liturgy, lyric
sequences, and in narrative and dramatic works), the relationship of
music theory and poetic theory in the Middle Ages, and the
relationship of performance to written transmission of lyric poems.
Among the works we will study are lyrics by Prudentius, Boethius,
Venantius Fortunatus,  Gottschalk of Orbais, Hrabanus Maurus, Dhuoda
of Septimania, Adam of St. Victor, Hildegard von Bingen, Perotinus
Magnus, Hugh Primas, Walter of Châtillon, Hadewijch of Brabant,
Sordello, Guido Cavalcanti, Dante, Petrarch, Catherine of Siena,
Francis of Assissi, Francesco Landini, Guillaume de Machaut, Eustace
Deschamps, Geoffrey Chaucer, John Lydgate, Christine de Pizan, and
Florencia Piñar; representatives of the trobadors, trobairitz,
trouvères, and the Minnesänger; and selections from the Cambridge
Songs, Carmina Burana and Cantigas de Santa Maria.  We will study
these poems in the original languages, along with English
translations.  Whenever possible, we will listen to performances of
the lyrics we read.  (Knowledge of a medieval language would be
helpful, but is not required. No prior knowledge about medieval
music required.)