Reading the Medieval Book (Poetics of Orality and Literacy)

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9780268041090: Reading the Medieval Book (Poetics of Orality and Literacy)

Wolfram von Eschenbach's Willehalm was a 13th-century epic of conflict between Christian and Saracen at the time of the crusades. Highly popular among medieval audiences it survives in various forms. This study examines a rather unusual illustrated version of Willehalm , composed about fifty years after the original, three-fifths of which contains illustrative material. Kathryn Starkey highlights the relationship between word, image and performance in this manuscript, and argues that the images of the narrator which gesture towards the audience are not incidental illustrations of the events, actions and plots of the story. Rather, they are an attempt by eschenbach to include performative elements which are lost when an oral text is written down. It is this deliberate dialogue between text and its audeince, communicated through imagery, which forms the basis of discussion.

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Kathryn Starkey is associate professor in the Department of Germanic Languages at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.

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""Original in its insights, lucidly argued, and rigourously coherent, Reading the Medieval Book "makes a major, original statement on the relationship between text and image in medieval books."

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Kathryn Starkey
Published by University of Notre Dame Press, United States (2004)
ISBN 10: 0268041091 ISBN 13: 9780268041090
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Book Description University of Notre Dame Press, United States, 2004. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Reading the Medieval Book examines one of the most important epic poems of thirteenth-century Germany and its redaction in a richly illustrated manuscript created just fifty-five years after the poem s composition. Starkey s book reveals that the Munich-Nuremberg manuscript (c. 1270) of Wolfram von Eschenbach s Willehalm (c. 1215) was compiled with both oral performance and the written medium in mind. Wolfram contrasts the visual language of the court with the auditory one of the battlefield, drawing attention to the position of the narrator and the interpretive frame that he provides. The manuscript reflects Wolfram s clear interest in the oral and visual communication that played such a dominant role in court society of the thirteenth century. Starkey argues that rather than merely depicting the events of Willehalm s plot, the Munich-Nuremberg artists also visualized nuances and shifts in the text that may otherwise have become lost when the oral text was committed to the page. The Munich-Nuremberg redaction of Willehalm provides insight into the critical transition from a primarily oral to a literate experience in the literary culture of lay people in the West. Bookseller Inventory # POW9780268041090

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Kathryn Starkey
Published by University of Notre Dame Press, United States (2004)
ISBN 10: 0268041091 ISBN 13: 9780268041090
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Book Description University of Notre Dame Press, United States, 2004. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Reading the Medieval Book examines one of the most important epic poems of thirteenth-century Germany and its redaction in a richly illustrated manuscript created just fifty-five years after the poem s composition. Starkey s book reveals that the Munich-Nuremberg manuscript (c. 1270) of Wolfram von Eschenbach s Willehalm (c. 1215) was compiled with both oral performance and the written medium in mind. Wolfram contrasts the visual language of the court with the auditory one of the battlefield, drawing attention to the position of the narrator and the interpretive frame that he provides. The manuscript reflects Wolfram s clear interest in the oral and visual communication that played such a dominant role in court society of the thirteenth century. Starkey argues that rather than merely depicting the events of Willehalm s plot, the Munich-Nuremberg artists also visualized nuances and shifts in the text that may otherwise have become lost when the oral text was committed to the page. The Munich-Nuremberg redaction of Willehalm provides insight into the critical transition from a primarily oral to a literate experience in the literary culture of lay people in the West. Bookseller Inventory # POW9780268041090

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