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The Age of Chaucer by Boris Ford
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This is the first volume of the wonderful old Pelican guides. While the approach is decided old fashioned, it is a useful and readable survey. The real value for most of us is in the excellently chosen anthology which comprises about half of the volume. Full poems or very extended excerpts cover the period. Readers familiar of Chaucer may find these considerably more difficult, but a sensible amount of annotation eases most of the difficulties, especially if you follow the editor's sensible advice to allow yourself to go along with the general flow of the narrative and not worry too much about each individual word or sentence. ( )
1 vote sjnorquist | Aug 13, 2016 |
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In introducing this Guide to English Literature, it is as well to remember that this is the age of the Digest and the Headline, of the Comic and the Tabloid, of the Bestseller and the Month's Masterpiece: an age when a 'deep-seated spiritual vulgarity... lies at the heart of our civilization' in the words of the novelist, L. H. Myers.
By John Speirs
Lecturer in English, the University of Exeter
Anyone interested to read English medieval literature, for its own sake and as a preliminary to a fuller enjoyment of modern English literature, will first ask himself a number of questions.
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